Today is Wesak Day. The first day of a three-day weekend.
Unlike the normal weekends, the house is pretty quiet today. Ayah is at work and will only probably be back around 4:00pm. No surprise there, huh?And Hanna is busy doing her revision for her Mid-Year. Or at least I HOPE she is revising in her room now. She has yet to come down today, not even to have her breakfast. I normally would just leave her to study in her own time and on her own terms, and with her own style of studying. It has worked well thus far, and she has been doing quite well in school. Hopefully she'll be fine, insya Allah.
As for the other two munchkins who have been the ones who would be making the noise and memeriahkan the house during weekends (and weekdays, too, for that matter) - Hasya and Hilman, they are away on a school camping trip in Sungkai, and will only be back tomorrow evening. It's for the school's Unit Beruniform. They've been having the programme for years now, and Hasya was supposed to go last year, but, I didn't let her.
We never had problems with Hanna going on overnight school trips before this, even when she was in Primary School. I guess because we knew that she was quite independent, and the fact that the first few trips that she went on, they were all made compulsory, and we could not say "No". So, after a few times, it was easier to let her go.
This time around I had decided to let Hasya and Hilman go on the overnight school trip even though it was not compulsory for them to go. I was quite reluctant initially, but, Ayah said we should just let them go. And after their pleads and "Pretty-pleases", I gave in and decided to let them join their friends on the trip - NOT without feeling anxious about it the whole time (and still feeling it now actually!). One of the reasons why I finally gave in was the fact that both of them will be there and can (should?) keep an eye on each other.
And the preparation for their first camping trip was quite an experience for me, too. The things that they needed to bring, included, inter alia -
Selimut (on top of the sleeping bags?)
Baju and Seluar Sukan yang mencukupi (And how many pairs should that be?)
Cawan atau Gelas Plastik (and both insisted that they needed to bring BOTH?!)
Kasut yang sesuai untuk bersukan (Okay - does that mean ON TOP of their school shoes which they normally wear with their Pengakap and Tunas Puteri uniforms anyway?)
And because BOTH of them were going, whatever in the list that they didn't have, we had to go buy those stuff. TWO of each. So, TWO Sleeping Bags, and I went to get TWO types of Insect Repellants for EACH of them, TWO new pairs of Baju and Seluar Sukan each (on top of their existing ones), and new trainers for them as their old ones dah tak muat. I also got them a travelling toiletries set each.
And of course, I also added my own wajib items for them to bring along with them -
Panadol tablets for kids
Minyak Cap Kapak
Kool Fever Patches
Two pairs of normal clothings (even though it was not stated on the list)
And not forgetting some food supplies which included some Gardenia Butter Scotch Bread, Chipsmore Cookies, Tiger Biscuits, Some Pringles, and some Zip Chocolates for each of them. (Yup! This Mommy is worried they all tak cukup makan kat Camp nanti, especially anak bujang I yang memang kuat makan tu...Hehehe!)
The process of packing had started a few days before that. And Hasya insisted that the teachers had told them that they were not allowed to bring the normal handluggage type (with the rollers, etc.). So, everything was packed in duffel bags. One for Hasya, and one for Hilman. Two BIG duffel bags at that, too, as I didn't want them to bring too many bags with them. Even their sleeping bags could fit in them.
The arrangement was for me to send their camping bags to school on Thursday afternoon, when they would also hand their school bags for that day to bring home with me.
Came Thursday morning, after they had left for school, I made one last list check. Satisfied that they had everything they needed in the bags, I started to zip the bags up, and as with other things which could have only happened to me, the zippers to Hasya's bag just ripped open!!
It shouldn't be a major problem because we did have other bags which I could have transferred all her stuff to. But, I kept on hearing her voice insisting that they were not allowed to bring the normal roller bags.
So, this Mommy had to wait until 10:00a.m for the neighbourhood Midi Market to open. Went there, and they only had roller bags. Rushed to Te*co, and they only had roller bags. Rushed to OU. Oh yes - they do have duffel-like bags, BUT at over RM500/= each?!
Luckily one of them had some promotions going on, but, I had to walk a bit to an open area in one section of OU, and spent about 10 minutes searching for a good one at a relatively cheaper price. Found one which looked solid, selling at RM100 (after 50% discount). Aiyyyooo! Still quite expensive just to bring to a kid camping trip, I thought. But, I had no time to look for cheaper ones, and just pejam mata and paid for it.
Nasib baik lah Zaidy was driving me around, so, on the way to their school I managed to transfer all of Hasya's stuff to the new bag and we reached the school just before the bell rang. I was asked to send the bags up to the Hall while waiting for the kids.
The bell rang at 1:00p.m, and while waiting for Registration for the Camping Trip to start at 1:30p.m, the kids and I had lunch at the canteen. After lunch, I had to follow them up to the hall as I had to show Hasya her new bag and asked her to REALLY look at it and familiarize herself with it. Takut nanti dia tak kenal her own bag pulak lah kan?
And I was so worried if they (Hilman especially!) could not find any of the things that I've packed in their bags, and kept on telling them, "IF you cannot find any of the things, PLEASE check ALL the pockets, okay? They should be in one of them, okay?" I think I must have said that to them at least TEN times? THAT, on top of my pesan to brush their teeth and go to the toilet before they go to bed!
After registration and a briefing by the teachers, Hasya and Hilman salam-ed, hugged and kissed me and we bade farewell. They boarded the buses and I could see how excited they were. Hilman kept on looking at me, smiling and waving, while at the same time talking to his friends non-stop! But, I could see from his face that he was feeling a bit sad to go without me. While Hasya being Hasya, even if she was feeling sad, she was not showing it at all...
I had to leave before they bertolak as I had something on at the office at 3:15p.m. And as Zaidy drove me off, and as I glanced back at the bus they both were on, I felt a huge lump in my throat, and I was fighting back tears which had already welled up in my eyes...
And I said to myself... "Oh God. Ni baru camping trip nak gi Sungkai! How la nanti when they are really leaving home for good...?