Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Things I learnt from boarding school

My old digs

I attended boarding school from mid-grade 11 to graduation after my parents decided I was working too much at Baker's Delight and not studying.

I was NOT a rebel.  

I only wish I got sent to boarding school for doing something risque.  I do love implying that I was "sent" for everything other than the real reason.

  • Boarders will make a quick buck anyway they can including making beds, doing laundry and betting money on relationship time lines.
  • Your food of choice - toast.  If you can chase it with a glass of Milo you’re good to go.  No other food groups necessary.
  • Setting the fire alarm off with a toast malfunction is a good thing.  Sure your parents will be invoiced for $200 BUT you get a visit from the local, hot fireman crew.  Not to be underestimated in an all female environment,
  • Pillow fights stop after grade 8.  Lingerie is never involved.
  • There is no girl code on dating another boarder’s ex.  Friend’s ex?  Yes.  Someone you sleep on the same floor as?  No.
  • Girl code does apply to boys that you know from your hometown that are attending the nearby male boarding school.  If you know them pre-boarding school, they belong to you unless you say otherwise.
  • The boarders in the grade level immediately below you will always be the most irritating.
  • Vending machines are your friend.
  • You are training for a lifetime of paperwork.  You want to leave for the afternoon to the shops?  Great, fill in the form and wait for confirmation.
  • No matter how unattractive or unappealing, any male that steps within the school’s boundaries will be like a bug under a microscope.  This includes dads, little brothers and the local pastor.
  • You will never escape sharing a sleeping space with someone with conflicting music taste.  Cross your fingers that they’ve invested in earphones and that the posters aren’t too hideous on the eyeballs.  If not, mocking will commence.
  • Your quilt will represent your personality.
  • Your towel will match your quilt.
  • Your phone is your lifeline.
  • Daybugs (non-boarding students) will always be the enemy, no matter how nice.
  • When there are general school leadership elections you will vote along boarder lines, no matter your feelings.
  • Time served only increases your boarder power.  Like Samson, if you cut it short you're done.
  • You can get a lot achieved in the four minute allotted shower.  This will be a valuable life skill.
  • A communal television means you will see a lot of programming you don’t want to be exposed to.
  • There is no limit to how many times you can watch the ‘nobody puts Baby in the corner’ and resultant dance as a collective.
  • Politeness will get you everywhere with the head mistress.  This is another valuable life skill.
  • The headmistresses’ teenage emo son, forced to attend formal dinners with a hundred girls, will be the catch everyone is fishing for.
  • Watching the headmistress and her house mistresses interact proves to be a great microcosm of hierarchy and female politics.
  • A wet towel and the ceiling fan will be the loves of your life on a hot night.
  • Never keep goldfish as pets.
  • Shoes are never just your own, neither are your clothes.
  • You will not wear academic gowns at dinner, or ever.
  • Not one of your fellow boarders is ‘the chosen one’.


Sumdili said...

She is one of the greatest artists..She deserves it..Really nice..Thanks..

KateCoombs said...

"Your food of choice--toast." Such wit and clarity. Thanks! (The Harry Potter books are obviously rather misleading.