Lessons in values begin at home
MANY things have changed at home in the last decade or so.
For one thing, my mother has stopped doing my laundry. Her rationale: If I’m old enough to father a child (never mind the fact that I don’t have a child), I’m old enough to wash clothes.
On a more positive note, I no longer have to observe curfews and I can return home in the wee hours of the morning. Gone are the days when I would walk through the front door and be greeted by my father staring at the dining-room clock.
But one thing has remained constant throughout the years: the refrain that my parents like to use on me: “You think this is a hotel, is it?”
I have been amazed at how my parents have found so many instances to use that colloquial phrase.
When I was a teenager, it was the phrase which greeted me when I came home after spending a large part of the day out and failed to greet mum and dad.
“You think this is a hotel, ah, come and go as you please.”
As I entered adulthood, the same words were uttered after I hosted one too many drinkingcum-football-watching sessions.
These days, unwashed dishes in the sink or a laundry bag full of unwashed clothes would elicit the all-too-familiar response – mainly because my dad would end up washing the load.
“You think this is a hotel, is it, people wash for you.”
I may be 35, about to own my place and hopefully start a family. But in the eyes of my dear folks, I am never too old for a lesson in values.
So when it was announced recently that the (Singaporean) Education Ministry will now place more emphasis on building character and instilling values into young students, I could relate to that.
Even though I would like to think that I am a pretty upstanding human being, who was taught at a very young age the