Host Father had gone off to the airport to fly off to his current client assignment. (Other than holidays and a small amount of sick leave, he has been out of the country every week this year.)
Host Mother was left to round up the kids for school. Older Host Sister is always a little reluctant to get up on a school-day morning. Even more so on the first day.
Despite having a large house, we have only two bathrooms and only one shower. With three girls in the house, mornings are always going to be a logistical challenge.
Walking to school
The girls walk to school through the town. We live on the outskirts at the opposite (North) end of the town to the school. The walk is around one-and-a-half miles. Generally the girls like to walk. A nice way to prepare for the day and wind down at the end of the day. A healthy approach as well. Often they walk the dog who gets collected by car at the other end (can’t have the Host Mother walking along with you to school – that’s only for little children!). School bags are transported for them as well when the dog is being walked. This gives their backs a rest (they have too much to carry – most of them do not have lockers).
The girls do not walk alone. Several friends for several years who live near by walk to our house and then they all walk off to school together. Our own walking bus. Healthy and environmentally friendly (well, except for fetching the dog back by car.)
Mutty was obviously nervous on this first day. She did survive though. Younger Host Sister made sure she was taken to the right place on the first day. Her own blog tells of her experience at school.
Mutty did not realise that the intention was for them all to walk back home together at the end of the day so set off on her own. This caused a little bit of a panic on Host Mother’s part but all was well in the end.