Fast forward to Frasier’s first day at school which was preempted by much psychological preparation including nightly readings about what that first day would entail ( I seem to recall the protagonist was a young raccoon) the purchase of a special, fancy knapsack and a lunch that included sliced grapes (no choking hazard) and sandwiches that were cut into the shape of a duck. His teacher, a kind and vivacious woman who was all flowy skirts and paisleys (think: Ms.Frizzle) actually came to the house to introduce herself over the summer and had already made quite an impression.
When The Big Day came and my stomach once more began its orbit I was unsettled to note that it was my own lip and not Frasier’s that began to quiver.
True, his eyebrows began to slant in a way that pulled at my heart but still, anyone could see that he was not especially unnerved.
At the jarring ring of the school bell, he disappeared inside, almost mechanically, calling out “Bye Mum!” a plastic dinosaur in one hand, hardly looking back.
I was left standing in a cloud of flying pea stones blinking at the ghostly white my brown shoes had become.
The excitement and allure of treating myself to a (hot) coffee seemed tawdry now – in bad taste, really – and I couldn’t enjoy it even though I knew that I should be glad he was happy.
How often – in my life, anyway- I never end up feeling the way I think I will.