Approximately 3pm Tuesday afternoon.
After a frantic search for the primary school itself, then another 15 minute search for a car park that wasn't three streets away from the school, I find myself wandering aimlessly around the school grounds.
Administration building ahead...
Ah yes, there lies my salvation (?)
A guided tour to what I think is the right spot to wait for my nephews.
A handful of mothers sitting around the courtyard, each one on their phones, checking facebook no doubt as they sit and wait for their little blessings to come out from their classes.
A couple of young boys dawdle along behind their scurrying mother, kicking up the fallen leaves in the gutter. She seems distracted, and yet determined... a feeling I can definitely relate to.
A few minutes later the old familiar sound of the school bell transports me to my childhood as it breaks through the eerie silence.
A trickle of hopeful students emerge... and then an avalanche...
A pair of tiny little prep girls, bff's for certain, give their final hugs before heading their separate ways.
A couple of boys are using this time to use up some of that pent up energy boys can be renowned for, and they are running circles around anyone and anything they can... round and round and round they go, I'm surprised they are still standing after a good few minutes of constant activity.
Anxiety begins to creep in as I think how easy it would be to lose my little charges in this sea of little people, and I haven't even spied them yet.
A familiar voice calls my name, and suddenly I am surrounded by three handsome little faces, all so happy to see me, and all filled with information they are just bursting to share.
A primary school courtyard.
A new environment for this homeschooling mother.