It was Eve's first school Christmas concert this week. The Boy and I had taken the morning off and, video camera in hand, treked off to her school to watch her musical genius.
I know Eve has musical genius because for the last 4 weeks she has been practicing her Christmas songs. Loudly. Whenever she can.
Quick note to all teachers of almost three year olds, they cannot and will not be able to (for another year of so) sing the words "figgy pudding" so unless you want 40 parents giggling at whatever slightly rude words this phrase tends to sound like, ditch the second verse.
Being a stupidly expensive private nursery (although in HK they all are, but it still grates on me), we were welcomed by mince pies, juice and punch. I noted that the mother of the behaviourally challenged child and she of the really odd email had hit the punch. Then we were ushered into a room with the lilliput chairs whereupon we were told how hard all the children had been working on their songs.
Now, I can't recall being almost three but I am pretty sure that when faced with a paparazzi style group of 40 adults, all with cameras clicking and videos whirring, the only sensible reaction would be to panic, cry, gaze in fear and amazement - or all three. Which is what almost all of the 15 children in Eve's class did. There was absolutely NO singing at all. Cue more scary (sorry, encouraging) smiles from the parents and one parent actually got up and gave their little one a bit of a prod.
Half way through the first song, which was really only being sung by the teachers and parents, things started to get more interesting. One little girl, to her credit, threw herself into the challenge and started singing and dancing. One little boy took off his santa hat and went and sat on his Mum. Behaviourally challenged boy started grunting loudly. Another girl burst into very loud sobs. Eve stood, looked at us, smiled a bit and then went back to her previously mute and bemused status.
Nothing really changed on the next song, except that the kids had bells to ring so it was even more obvious that they were not actually moving. Jingle bells sung by the teachers and parents to resolutely silent bells.
It was hilarious. All us parents seemed to step into the enthusiasm vacuum of our children by overcompensating and behaving like, well, almost three year olds singing Christmas songs. Hand waving, manic smiles, clapping, even jingling the odd bell.
After about 15 minutes the performance was finished and off we all went after wondering at the Christmas craft that the children had done. As an aside, Eve told me that her reindeer looked sad because he had lost his Mummy. Ah, that will be what she did while I was away in the UK last week.