Carenza is basing her revision on a timetable, but Perran says he has a “tick list”. Probably I should have asked what, exactly, is on the tick list, but I am easily distracted. Carenza’s timetable is a masterpiece of colours and abstract shapes – possibly a substitute for the Art A level that she still sometimes hankers after. Mesmerised by the pink and orange rectangles, I also fail to check what is on her timetable. The lettering might say “watch telly, eat biscuits” for all I know. Their older brother has only recently adopted the revision timetable, previously objecting that it was “too depressing” to see all the tasks that he needed to complete laid out before him.
Myself, I used the traditional methods of blind panic coupled with a growing burden of guilt about whichever subject I had dealt with least recently. This worked brilliantly, although I do recall my dressing-gowned mother sticking her worried face round the door at 4am and saying “Shouldn’t you be asleep now?”
I distinctly remember that in those days parents knew nothing – how much has changed! - so I responded to her
Today I turn to Perran and say,
“Could I have a look at that tick list?”
“Oh Mum,” he says, “I’m fine.”