"Please don't sit at the front," said Love Chunks as we walked into the stuffy classroom that still smelled of post-soccer sandals, arm-pits and old sandwiches three hours after the ring of the home time bell.
But I insisted and pretended I hadn't heard him. I knew that by surging ahead, he'd probably follow and sit next to me, even if it wasn't his ideal place.
"I hate sitting at the front - what if there are some little tackers who are brothers and sisters of other kids at the concert and they can't see over our big heads?"
"Stuff 'em," my hand flicked up as if shooing them and LC's issue point away. "We got here first and our kid is in the concert too."
Amidst the squawks of toddlers, the flap-flap-flap of paper programmes being used as fans and the fidgeting of excited performers waiting their turn sitting cross-legged on the carpet, a seven year old playing 'Hot Cross Buns' kick-started the show.
"Ssssh", Love Chunks mimed and tapped my arm, as the loud 'ZZZZZZzzzzzzip' of the camera carry-bag was opened.
Ohferpharksakes how the hell am I supposed to get my camera out quietly? Isn't it like a packet of chips at the cinema or a band aid on a hairy leg: rip it open and get it over and done with? Pompous Old Git.
"Sit Down" he hissed again a short time later, just as quietly but with more urgent menace in his eyes.
Again, I ignored him. POG.
I had made us sit at the very front so that I could get a photo of our little darling playing her viola. She's very good at it damnit and has diligently practised her musical pieces and taken particularly gentle care of her beautiful instrument.
Her piece was the standout of the night. Played not just accurately but with attention to timing and holding out some notes, lingering on others for emphasis and skipping along to build up the rhythm. It may have merely been titled 'Study' but my eyes were moist.
Love Chunks was right, of course. I couldn't stand up and distract her and being right up the front meant that this was the photo we ended up with:
I'll listen to him next time.