One Small Step

This is Tinson1, though admittedly not the most up-to-date photo of him.

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It feels as though that picture was taken yesterday. Yet since then he’ s been to playschool, then real school, then secondary. He’s tried his hand at soccer, hockey, basketball and athletics, been on school trips from the Aran Islands to Barcelona, and had a go at the tin whistle, the violin and the guitar. Actually, come to think of it, he’s cost us a fortune.

And this morning he starts his Leaving Cert exams and, unless he finds a job dancing in Britney Spears videos, he’ll never wear a school uniform again.

He has applied to Trinity to do a course called (I’m not making this up) “Physics and Space Science”. I really hope he gets in. He’s loved science all the way through school and, since I once scored 26% in a Science Exam, I’ve always been baffled by his talent for it.

His class had their Graduation Ceremony last week (God, we get more American by the day, they even had a yearbook) and it was wonderful to watch this collection of 96 confident and good-natured young adults, and see the respect and affection that they obviously had for their teachers and for their school.

My generation worked our arses off so that these kids would have a better economic outlook than we had when we were leaving school. It seemed to be working. Just a couple of years ago our biggest concern was that none of the Tinkids might ever be able to afford their own house. Then a small group of selfish, stupid gobshites managed to blow the whole thing, and again we are looking at the prospect of a generation facing unemployment or emigration.

I hope things get better quickly. Because these kids deserve more. Tinson1 has worked very hard, as have a niece and nephew of mine who also face the Leaving today.

I’ve just texted him that we’re proud of him, and got the reply “thanks, dad, means a lot”, which made me well up in a most unmanly way.

And we are proud of him. So very proud.

All the best today, my son.

2 thoughts on “One Small Step

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