When we were children, we were so easily amused.
We would climb that same old tree a thousand times, getting just that little
bit higher each time, and each time feeling as if we had accomplished
something great. We would pour sugary water into plastic cups, place the in the freezer, and eagerly inspect them every two minutes to see if they were any more frozen than before. We would stare into starry skies
with binoculars that seemed like a key to unlock the mysteries of the universe
. We would avidly await the arrival of loved ones from far away, euphoric
with anticipation.It was a time of discovery, a time to explore.
These were our holidays back when we were young, innocent and naive. We were never bored, as we would constantly find new, imaginative ways to entertain ourselves. We were blissfully ignorant. While school was an interesting and novel experience, we were eager to leave so that we could continue living in the fashion to which we had become accustomed before we were so rudely interrupted by such obstructions.
Through time, our world changed. Our beautifully chaotic lifestyles were slowly replaced with a new, boringly ordered cycle, a clinically sterilised little cube of a world. No matter how we tried to cling on to what we knew and loved, we were eventually squeezed into this new world. We were a little lump of contentment that was being forced into a generic, obedient new form, however strongly we protested.
Obviously we would understand when we were older.
Perhaps I accepted this new world too readily, perhaps I was weak. I fulfilled this new world's every request, sat down with silent irreverence like a good boy should. Eventually I became a part of something I once loathed, such an integrated little part of this new world that I now find myself defending it, doing its bidding with open eyes. I go where it tells me, do what it tells me, say what it tells me, and like a dog I get thrown a petty reward for performing a cute little trick for my master. It disgusts me, and yet I continue to conform to a world that I once saw with such disdain.
Now that I have so fully embraced this world, retuning back home to the old one is so unfulfilling. Of course, I can only do this within the predetermined time period portioned out to me by my overseers, the 'holidays' that I can now see with only a scornful sense of violation. It is as if I am being teased me with the offer of retuning to my old life, only to have suffocatingly constrictive conditions affixed to my release. I can liken it to little less than a prisoner being gruffly pushed into the open, only to find that what seemed like freedom is still surrounded by the depressingly familiar walls that will contain him forever. I feel offended at the idea that I would be expected to accept such a tiny piece of my old life, such tainted goods from the very despotists that took it from me in the first place.
I am no crusader, though, and like an obedient little coward I take what I am given. I subject myself to these 'holidays', but they are so very unsatisfying. I get no enjoyment, no joy or fulfillment from suddenly having the structure that underpins my everyday life torn away. That depresses me most of all, the fact that I am now so dependent on the system that I cannot be happy without it. I feel abandoned, lonely and cold. Nowhere can I find even the smallest piece of enthusiasm, excitement or amusement as I slowly try to construct my own little world to compensate for the loss of the one that I called home. After so many years of conditioning, the ultimate goal has been achieved; I need the system more than anything else, I am now ripe to be exploited for what little that I am worth.
This is why I say that school holidays suck, because they are the quintessential tease, and offer no relief as you clamor to pull your life back together.