Wish you weren’t here

Wendy Varley

Do we really want to know what our children are doing on school trips? I ask, because within 24 hours of my 11-year old son leaving for a residential trip to Wales, I’d received a text from school saying the class blog was now updated. The brief itinerary I’d been given in advance was brought to life, with tales of wellies lost in mud, four-mile walks, and beach-combing. (Which kind of made me wonder why they had to leave the Isle of Wight…) Everyone is, apparently, eating well. Parents can comment, though so far I’ve resisted adding a message, because, because…

What has happened to the precarious but character-forming sense of distance school trips used to entail? That thrilling vacuum, during which there was no news to or from home, not even an announcement that you’d arrived safely at your destination? If we’re in constant touch, where’s the chance for…

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