English version Italian version
The Spectacular for the Grandparents
Every year, towards the end of the school year, the elementary schools prepare the kids to put on a show with music and songs that will be dedicated to their grandparents. They do this is in recognition of the role that grandparents play in the life of their grandchildren. This year, once again, we were invited to the show. It is called “All that Jazz”. The school attended by my grandchildren is in an upper-middle class school district. My grandkids ended up there simply because they happen to live near the school; but we are a very simple people, without any pretensions. When we arrived there, all us grandparents were welcomed by the students, who escorted us into the room where the show was going to be held. Before that, they asked us to register in the guest registry book, gave us our tickets with our name on it that we had to stick on our clothes. They gave a rose to all the grandmothers; everything was very American, very nice.
In the recreation room there were also the kids’ mothers, but they were there only to help out and take pictures.
We sat down next to the other grandparents we knew, waiting for the show to start.
In the mean time, other guests continued arriving. An old woman, holding on to the arm of her caregiver came in. She also had a very elegant cane. The woman had hair dyed black, in complete contrast to her very wrinkled face; her lipstick was too red and the rouge on her cheeks were like two round plates on either side of her face. She sat down in the first row, with her caregiver next to her. Further down, an old man, who was clearly wearing a hairpiece, satin anticipation of the show. The kids’ mothers were standing up to take pictures of their “mini-stars”. They were young women with straight blond hair that fell to their shoulders. They were all natural blondes, no dye jobs here.
A couple of other women had their hair pulled back and held in place by a hair clip that looked like a clothespin. Here and there, little wisps of hair fell down as if they had casually fallen out away from the rest of the hair. The stylist had clearly worked who knows how long to create that “casual chic” look. They were young women wearing designer clothing, Prada purses, Fendi perfume, and Gucci shoes; even the strollers were made by a high end brand. I took a look at myself; I was so absorbed looking at them that I had forgotten what I was wearing: the usual – dark skirt, red blouse, black shoes and a black purse with red piping at the edges. I had bought everything during the end-of-the-season sales; no one would have recognized the names on the labels of my clothes. For me that was fine. The lights went out and the curtain went up. On the stage there were at least thirty 6-year old children; they sang and danced pieces from the famous Broadway show.
It was clear that they were well prepared. Only one or two boys hit each other with their elbows, but they were immediately stopped when their teacher pointed at them. We were all paying attention to the actors. Every grandparent recognized their grandchildren wearing their costumes pointed them out to the others. While the show continued, I felt a little movement near me. I looked down and I saw a little pink angel who was barely standing able to stand. It was a little girl, not older than a year and a half. She was very pretty with her red curls and her big black eyes. She started dancing as the music started; she moved her little hands and her head, while her curls undulated around her face. She danced moving her feet back and forth and we all applauded her. She continued her dancing, while her mother called to her and asked her to come back. She, however, ignored her mother and kept dancing and our attention was focused entirely on the little “red” one. Encouraged by our attention, she moved her hands and feet and even started moving even her little bottom, then in a move that was, perhaps, a bit too energetic, she lost her balance and fell down. She found herself sitting on the floor, completely lost. Only then did she look for her mother and ran to her crying. PRICELESS!
Delia Socci Skidmore