At last. Today is the day. This morning the morning.
I load a guitar, a harmonium, a small stool and a clanking bag full of obscure percussion instruments from the four corners of the earth - dried gourds fight it out with metallic resonating tubes with unlikely holes - into the back of the car.
They are waiting for me outside the pick up room. The boy with the red hair jumps up and down with excitement. He shakes my hand and says "Bonjour" and briefly looks me in the eyes, something that all of them find difficult to do. He takes part in the second session and is steered off to do something else in the meantime. He shouts "RAP" at me eagerly as he leaves.
The girl who is obsessed with keys takes my car keys and struggles with the magic word as she points them at my car and says "abracadabra"... sort of.
It opens and we unload. I coax my keys back from her and we dig the boy who says "frites" out of a deep bath of plastic balls in the corner of the recreation room, and persaude him to release the bright orange one that he has in his mouth. He sits on his seat and jams his fingers in his ears to be sure that the music is at exactly the right volume. He gets up briefly to touch very gently with his fingertips the face of the third musician, the boy who says "oui".
The boy who says "oui" is large and gentle and never says anything other than "oui". We start the familiar chords of the Bonjour song. His face breaks in half with a huge grin.
Another school year has started.
5 days ago