A day of odd contrasts.

It was the ‘celebration assembly’ at the the Kinderbesten’s school today. Both of them had songs to sing, alongside the rest of their respective classes, so naturally all the family came along. We go their early, but all the ‘good’ seats (i.e. the plastic chairs lined up at the back of the hall) were already taken. We grabbed a couple of spots on the metal benches (literally outside the back of the hall) but before the assembly even started it was starting to get uncomfortably crowded, so I ducked away to stand yet even more furtherer at the back.

The assembly started. And then just kept going. And going. And going. Class after class got up to do their christmas numbers. Various announcements were made that I couldn’t hear a word of–partly because the speakers didn’t reach beyond the back of the hall, and partly because all the other restless parents had started gabbing.

There was a definite highlight however: all of the teachers getting on stage in front of the school and performing deranged ballet while wearing sparkly tutus (yes, even the men).

Still, after all of it I was exhausted by the endless procession of things I couldn’t see or hear, and generally uncomfortable at the mass of people around me.

Then I returned to work. We’d had a maintenance related power cut that morning, so everyone else had decided to work from home for the day. We also had workmen in fitting a new air conditioning unit. So I spent the whole day being the only person in the office while being surrounded by workmen drilling and bashing all day.

It was strangely peaceful. Somehow I was able to shut out all the noise, get on with work, and enjoy having the office to myself while not remotely having the office to myself.