We talked all the way home. Not everything that happened that day was bad, but neither was it all good. "Mom," they said. "It's all different here!"
"Oh? tell me how different.." Apparently the use of language was one way it was different, for our small boy had said the word 'bloody' on the playground, and had been in trouble for it.
And what was the matter with saying it? Well, they didn't know it but children were not allowed to say that word, even if they didn't mean whatever it was meant to have meant. Or something. Here's what happened: while on the playground he shared that he had gotten a 'bloody nose' last year. I mean, doesn't everyone get a bloody nose at some point? I would have thought such a thing was relatively ordinary. But he quickly found out it was a BIG mistake to say it, for the response was swift.
A teacher learned about it and the child that uttered the abominable b-word had to stand against the wall for the duration and not talk.
Suddenly I remembered. "Oh! I knew about that word but never thought to mention it. You'll probably have to call it a 'nosebleed' from now on.."
So that was the first event.
The next bit, as you already know, was the way they ate the school dinner. Americans eat the American way, which is pretty different from the English. We cut our food with (of course) the knife in the right hand, and the fork in the left. Then - and I realize what a waste of time this all is - we switch hands and pick up the bite with the fork in our right hand. Unconscionable!
Miss Lunn expressed that this sort of eating simply would.not.do.
But before they could tell me more, the topic suddenly changed direction. We were passing the chestnut trees, and those two lit up like light bulbs. "Mom! It's the CONKERS!!!"
"Conkers! They're all over the place - look!"
Sure enough, there were horse chestnuts scattered 'all over the place', ahead of us. The b-word, and dinner knives, and strange differences were forgotten. They explained to their mother all about 'conkers'.
"You see, mum, they drill a hole through...."
So it was 'mum', now? That actually sounded pretty good.
See you along the way!
photo credit: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/andrewknots/7362338114/">andrewknots</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/">cc</a>
photo credit: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/16454146@N06/1829089796/">vilb</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/">cc</a>
photo credit: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/moveyourknees/3529809326/">Jenny P.</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/">cc</a>