I firmly suspect that the hands of the clock move faster at this time of the day than they do the rest of the day. Otherwise why would I see 7:00 only a few minutes back ? I just don’t know..All I know is that I have to hurry …leave home by 8:05 in order not to be terribly late for school.
I put the milk in the microwave, the bread in the toaster , the cornflakes in the bowl and shout at the top of my voice ( maybe the 29th time)….”Arno, where are you? Breakfast is served” . The past tense is used purposely otherwise the little master adds the time of the microwave to his “lazily-finishing-his playing-and-coming-down-the-stairs” routine! I Go back to kitchen, take the milk out, take the bread out……
The cornflakes are now indeed on the table, the son is nicely seated in front, the mother is busy instructing him on the speed with which he should finish the bowl. At the same time , with her back to the table she is also spreading butter on her toast (multitasking and all that!!). The little one fiddles with his spoon, fiddles with the dry cornflakes, fiddles with whatever is on the table. The eating process is extremely slow, not because of the hunger, but because of the lack of focus! That’s what the mother thinks!
The instructions start very nicely…” please Arno, eat quickly , we will be late for school”. Child begins to eat at a speed much much lower than the speed stated minutes before by the focused mother.
Gradually the tone goes an octave higher, words like ‘Please’ just drop off.
“Arno, Quick! We don’t have all the time in the world..EAT!”. Child continues eating but still at a very very slow speed.
I proceed to make myself a good cup of tea. That eats away my 3.5 mins. I turn around only to see the little one holding a cornflake in his hand , looking at the ceiling and even SMILING, mouth empty! One flickering moment of anger sparks..all this while did I not make myself clear? Clear about the speed ? clear about the need to focus on food? So I shout, “Arno! FOCUS! FOCUS FOCUS……..”
He looks down from the ceiling as if waking up from a bad dream (in this case that of a witch screaming at him) and looks at me patiently , smiles and says…” You know what Mama, yesterday when Tom was eating cornflakes, Jerry walked up behind him and………………..”
I had to smile.
Thank you God for creating small five year olds who don’t focus!! What an uninteresting world that would have been if EVERYONE focused……………