A Childhood Vignette: My School Day Morning Routine

School MR

“Time to wake up, honey!” Tanya slowly rolls on her bed and flops on her back. She wearily says, “I can’t get up…it’s too early.” With a gentle tap on the head with the newspaper, dad says “Come on, get up. We don’t want to be late for school!” Tanya gives a sigh of reluctance as she stretches out her hand to dad. “I need a piggy-back ride, please”. “Oh ho ho ho! What a princess! You’re so lucky your dad is strong enough to carry you.” Dad sits down on the side of the bed, and Tanya droops herself onto dad’s back.

“Ready?”

“Yup.”

“Then up we go!”

It was nice, Tanya thought, to have a ride to the bathroom especially so early in the morning. She indeed felt like a princess.

Tanya brushed her teeth, washed her face, and with a bit of struggle, got dressed in her school uniform. The tricky part about getting dressed for school was zipping the back part of her jumper. “If only my arms were a bit longer”, she said to herself. Once she felt the zipper go all the way up, Tanya let out a sigh of relief.

“Phew! Didn’t take too long today!”

School Uniform

My school uniform

Then off she scurried to the kitchen for some breakfast. She made toast for herself, and for dad to take to work as well.

While dad was in the bathroom, she peeked her head inside his room to grab his suitcase. She packed the toast in the suitcase and placed his water canister next to it. Tanya did all this so she wouldn’t be late for school. Dad took too long getting ready, so this was her way to help him out.

As Tanya was packing the toast, she noticed the loose quarters in dad’s suitcase. She took another peek inside the room and shouted,

“Hey dad! Can I have 50 cents?”

“Go ahead!”

“Yesss! Thanks daddy!”

Now she had some pocket money for snacks at recess. She didn’t always ask dad for money because too much snacks at recess is bad, as mom says. But today was the first time in a long time she asked for money, so it was all right.

When dad came out all dressed up for work, Tanya tried to hurry him out the door by warming up his coffee and making it just the way he liked it. Tanya made sure he didn’t catch on to what she was really up to. You see, dad liked to do things in his own timeline, and he would have a fit if he couldn’t. But Tanya didn’t like being late for school. So, this was the dilemma for Tanya on most mornings.

Tanya glanced at the clock, it was 7:48 a.m. and dad was finally putting on his loafers. Tanya was already walking out the door to the garage.

“The first bell rings at 7:55”, Tanya thought to herself. “Oh, I hope we make it before the second bell. The teacher is so strict on tardy kids!”

As soon as dad came strolling into the garage, he unlocked the doors and Tanya climbed into the black Nissan Pathfinder. She plopped her backpack on the car floor, buckled up, and held dad’s suitcase and canister for him.

Dad started the engine, and the radio turned on.

“K-EARTH 101, Los Angeles!

Good Morning folks, it’s 7:50 a.m. and we’re going to start off your morning with the Beatles!

Here comes the sun,

Here comes the sun

And I say it’s all right”

It was one of dad’s favorite songs, in fact he would sing and strum this song on the guitar quite often. Tanya grew to love this song and could also sing along with dad, but not this morning. She was too anxious about being tardy.

As dad drove out to the street, he was singing and tapping to the music. When the song reached to the “Little darling” part, he reached out to nudge Tanya’s cheek and said, “don’t worry, you’ll be right on time honey!” Tanya looked over at dad, let out a big breath, and said “okaaay…”

Just as the front of the school came into view, Tanya took a peek at the time and thought,

“It’s 7:57 a.m., 3 minutes until the second bell!”

Dad drove up to the entrance, and waved at the teachers who were on drive-thru duty. Most kids get embarrassed when parents do such things, but Tanya wasn’t concerned. She was more worried about being on time. She noticed her class was already heading towards the classroom. As soon as dad parked the car, Tanya jumped out, swung her backpack on, and was about to shut the door until she remembered something.

“Oh, bye dad!”

“Bye hun! Have a great day at school!”

“Okay!”

Dad drove off, and Tanya quickly walked inside the school. She didn’t want to run because THAT was embarrassing. Instead, she walked really fast. In fact, she walked so fast that she resembled the fast-walking ladies she would see at the park in the summer time.

At last, Tanya arrived to her classroom and once she sat down, the second bell rang.

“Pheeeew! What a morning! I guess dad was right; I did make it right on time. Thanks dad!”

Dedicated to my dad. Happy Birthday Daddy! Thank you for always making sure I got to school right on the dot!

Me and daddy

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