Since my daughter started school, I have been living in a strange twilight zone – between reason and utter confusion. Any day can have me pushed off the edge into the sea of baffling diary notes, the circulars, the planners and instructions. Each afternoon, I open her school diary, trembling inside, a sense of dread making my heart grow cold. Will there be something in there today? Will I have to send some incomprehensible craft material, some tube, some box, some string? Will I have to take some pictures, some printout and make her learn some important trivia? Oh! The tension.
It does not matter how many years you have spent in a corporate office, handled client meetings, liaised with multiple teams and trackers. But those sneaky notes. They creep up on you. Yes, they do!
Despite the daily checking of the diary, I manage to miss notes. It certainly takes a knack. Recently I found a note which was sent about 4 days before. I stare at in disbelief. How? What? And it is quite cryptic.
“Send Faber Castell writing pencil.”
Cold sweat. Palpitations. I am already late. Why did K not say anything? When was this needed? Why only Faber Castell? How about I send a pencil now? Apsara? Camlin? good old Natraj? Certainly, people do not stock up on a specific brand of stationery. Or do they? And why not stock up on our homegrown brands then? Sure Camlin and Apsara write as well as Faber Castell.
I message another school mom.
Me: What’s with the Faber Castell pencil that they have asked for?
Mom 2: Was there a note? A does not have any note in her diary about any pencil.
Mom 2: In any case, we sent all stationery stuff at the beginning of the term remember? Even FC pencils.
Me: Were there FC pencils in the stuff we got from school? I do not remember what I did with them!!!
(exclamation marks increasing exponentially in my head!!!!!)
Cursing myself, I frantically look for the list of things we had got from school. In my head an opera of “Oh what a terrible mother ….” threatening to ring. Doesn’t take much for guilt to set in.
Miraculously I find the list and send a pic of the list to my friend the other school-mom.
Me: There are no FC pencils!!!!
Mom 2: No.. See at the bottom.. FC colour pencils.
Me: Colour pencils!!! Did they mean colour pencils in the note??!!!!! But I sent a normal writing pencil. Camlin.
Mom 2: Oh you sent normal writing pencil? Hahaha. We have never sent a normal writing pencil.
My brain is in a whirl. This is what a normal writing pencil can do to you some times.
When K comes home, I check her note again. OK. It clearly says “writing pencil”. I promptly buy a box of Faber Castell writing pencils, sharpen two, put them in her bag the next morning and ask her to check with her teacher if this is what is required.
Come afternoon my daughter assures me that I sent the right thing.
Problem solved, though the mystery remains.
Of the unfathomable diary notes!