I remember back in secondary school, during those free periods, when I'd be clowning around with my friends, climbing out of windows and sneaking down into the bush to get up to no good, or nicking off in one of their cars to do a trip to McDonalds.
I would look back over my shoulder at the group of girls, sitting quietly, being studious, using their free time wisely, hitting the books, and generally just being Very Good. I'd look back and see them rolling their eyes at us silly boys, and we'd sort of sneer back at them.
It was a strange relationship, because on one hand I disliked them and their Goodness, and their seemingly Holier Than Thou Attitude, but on the other hand I sort of envied their self-control and level heads, and deep down really wanted their acceptance.
Fast forward fifteen or twenty years, I see schoolgirls at the bus stop of a morning, and those same sorts of feelings arise. They aren't even at school yet and they are already studying, heads buried in text books, or tapping away on a laptop, getting ahead on the geography essay that isn't even due until the last term of the year. They've probably been very sensible all weekend as well, putting in 5-7 hours each day, stopping only for a very sensible cheese and tomato wholemeal sandwich for lunch.
Even after all this time I feel that seem mixture of "grr, live a little!" and envy at their level of discipline and maturity. And also a pang of guilt for not applying myself more when I should have. In a lot of ways it seems like I haven't changed all that much in all this time. I still have that urge to rebel and be a goose, and I still simultaneously get angsty at, but also envy, those people who seem to have a lot of maturity and self discipline.
Who were you at school? Do you think you have changed much since then?