It’s a funny thing this growing up business. To arrive upstairs I have to climb the stairs or take a lift. At present, we cannot teleport – or apparate if you prefer. I suspect unless you are a wizard or witch, that the same applies to you. We are the sum of all our beginnings. As are the Rokeby boys. They only spend about a quarter of their waking year here at Rokeby (yes, I’ve worked it out) and so the other 75% is at home with you. Still, over nine years that amounts to over 12,000 hours. If it takes 10,000 hours to completely master a skill, you have some idea of what we can do.
When we grow up we ‘put aside childish things’. That is all correct. However, the things we must first learn: our skills, our behaviours, our character traits – they have all been long since formed. We have our part to play at this wonderful school. Not simply to impart knowledge, but to help boys to become. We have 12,000 hours to help them to become the people the world needs, with your help and support.
I am fascinated (and worried) by the Brexit scenario. The Mother of all Parliaments can’t deliver. She is paralysed by analysis and argument. I can’t help wondering what the outcome would be if those involved went back to the start. Not to the clever rhetoric, fevered conviction or tortured endless voting but what if they actually asked themselves: are we listening to each other? Really listening? Are we considerate? Are we kind? Are we a good example? Can we demonstrate true, honest leadership? Can we inspire optimism and hope? Can we show restraint, even hold back and be patient as we learn from failure? After all, whatever the outcome, the only right way forward is with togetherness and right behaviour, or what is the point of it all? We learn those things early in life. We spend the rest of our lives practising.
So, there’s the answer to the age-old question: it is the egg, the beginning, the start that gets you to the chicken at the end. The modern chicken came from the parental DNA combined in the zygote: the new egg. It starts at the beginning, as we grow and form. We know that at Rokeby. We do eggs!
Happy Easter to you all.