Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Of School Bags And The New Year ...

The last day of the year is finally upon us. The year has been one that I would like to forget so I'm not even going to bother talking about it or even making up any silly resolution that I know I won't keep.

I'm just looking forward to the new year tomorrow despite all the gloom and doom theories by financial experts and so called feng shui gurus out there. I believe life is how you make it out to be for yourself and not something that's predicted for you by some unknown stranger out to make a fast buck.

So today I'll talk about school. No, I'm not really going back to school or anything, like some people I know (LOL!). The school holidays are drawing to a close and the boys have about 5 days before they both go back to school and wifey can have some peace and quiet for a change. 

Those two rascals when they're together can be quite a handful and I 'm sure she'll be more than happy not having to hear the word 'mummy' uttered for a few hours at least while they're at school ... LOL!

And it's also at this time of the year that we spend quite a bit of money for the boys school stuff. It's a good thing this year we bought almost all of their stuff much earlier except for a few things that has to wait until school finally opens on the 5th of January.

You know, going back to school stuff can put quite a strain on your finances. I only have two kids and it already costs quite a bit when it comes to buying their things like uniforms, shoes, school bags, stationary sets, etc, etc, etc that sometimes I wonder how people with 4, 5 or even 6 school going children manage! I think if I had another kid to put through school, I'd probably become a pauper soon.

Most of the things that the boys needed for school was pretty basic and available at loads of places around town. The only item that I really had problems with was getting the younger fellows school bag. You're probably wondering what's so difficult about getting a school bag, right? There's a lot available out there I know but my younger boy goes through school bags like water.

His school bag doesn't last more than a single school term before it breaks apart. Now before you all go accusing me of probably being a cheapskate and buying his cheap school bags, let me tell you that even those branded backpack type of school bags that are the norm with kids these days also doesn't last that long.

School bags these days are not what they were during my time. They're made of this fabric that cannot hold too much weight and my son carries quite a lot of books to school that the stitching tends to break apart in no time! And trying to get it repaired isn't really an option cos it doesn't last long.

I remember during my school days, bags were made of durable canvas and my favourite bag was this green army like backpack that would last for years on end. Those of you from over here and around my age (the guys especially) would probably know of this bag.

It was the in-thing back then. Almost every kid would have one and we differentiated it by drawing stuff on the green canvas. I remember mine was so full of doodles and stuff that there was hardly any green surface left on it ... LOL!

And do you guys remember that red, black and white tartan like suitcase bags? It was popular in the 80's. I think quite a bit of kids had it back when I was in primary school. It was so durable that you could sit on it while waiting for the school bell to ring.

It came in two different sizes, if Im not mistaken. I searched a net trying to find a picture of it but there was none to be found. Once again, I'm sure those of you my age or even a little younger would probably know of this bag and may even have used it during your school days :D 

Now those bags were classic and they lasted years no matter how many books you had in them. I know mine was always full of my books cos I was too lazy to arrange my books according to the timetable and just took every book to school with me every single day. That probably explains my back problems ... LOL! I wish I had the common sense to have kept my bag as souvenir or something though.

So with that thought in mind, I decided to go look for that old army canvas backpack for my son. And I went practically everywhere to find it. They just don't sell them anymore. I was adamant about finding it and told wifey we'll wait till the last day and if by then we still can't find it, the well just have to get him the usual bag for school.

But luckily during the holidays last week, I took wifey and we drove to this place called Old Town, yes, it's named as such cos it really is an 'old' town. Though it's a little more modern than before but the people over there are still so laid back. I used to buy my school bags from the shops there and surprisingly the same shops are still there selling school bags even till this very day.

And to my utter surprise and joy, they still do sell those durable canvas school bags albeit in the shape of todays backpack design, but still canvas nonetheless :D And the guy selling the bags was so old that I think he was there since my schooling days. And a nice gentleman he was as well. He even gave me a healthy discount for the bags.

Now I just hope that bag will at least last him all year if not longer. But judging by the quality and workmanship, I'm sure it would :D At least next year I know where to look for school bags. Ok, now before I end my year with this final longwinded post for 2008, let me wish you guys a Happy New Year and a an even brighter 2009!.


  1. Is it me you mean going back to school again????? LOL!!!!
    My son only going to kindergarten, and it already cost a bomb to hubby's pocket..! (not me pay the school fees ya!! hehe) I cannot imagine how it will be when he goes to real school..not to mention daughter need to go to school too..! *sigh*
    But..not to spoil your new year mood, here me and my family want to wish you and your family a wonderful New Year 2009!! May we strike millions in the coming year..hahaha!!!

  2. Just the other day, hubby and I were talking about the white school shoes which is apparently more expensive now. A pair almost cost 50 bucks?? I remember my school days, the free Kosan school shoe is the only option I have.

    I wonder how these stuffs gonna cost 10 years down the road.

  3. Happy 2009! Woohoo! I have already started my countdown! Can't wait to see Shemah tonite. Hehehe

  4. well..everyone is bz now for the beginning of new year...a lot of thing need to be prepared for their kids..hopefully you don't dizzy with all money coming out than coming in.heheh

  5. Popping by to say Happy New Year!!!

  6. Oh, this post brings back memories. The suitcase bags... remember the OA type? I had a red one. They're so strong, you can sit on them while waiting for the bus!

    I can empathise with you about the spending. I am feeling the strain too with uniform and books to purchase. Sigh.

    Oh,another thing. Your kids are at this age where they're calling 'mummy' every 2 minutes. Don't worry. Give them a few more years and that will stop.It used to happen to me too. I can't go out and have a decent meal with a friend without my phone ringing every 30minutes. It's a wonder I still have these friends :-)

  7. hehehe lucky i am still years before i join all of you shopping for school bags..happy new year nick..

  8. May this New Year bring you more love, joy and success. HAPPY 2009! :)

    Wishing on a Falling Star
    Mariuca’s Perfume Gallery

  9. Costs increase especially when kids going to school! My kid starting next year too. Oh boy! Only 3 years old and pre-school fee are so expensive!! Gosh!

  10. Seems you have your family in the header now, yah? Happy family even in 2009 and years ahead. You bet, it's always like this at school openings. The kids want everything new.

    And Happy New Year to you and your family. Oh, don't talk about the crisis now, it will go over, hehee!

  11. I wish a happy 2009 for you and your family, full of joy, love, success and many, many dreams may come true! :o)

  12. My thanks and appreciation for you is HERE

  13. I have to wait another four weeks before my kids go back to school. I guess peace and quiet will have to wait a bit longer for me.

    It's 12.20am here on New Years Day and yours is the first blog I have visited for the New year. Do I get a prize or something for that :)

    The last of the great party animals hey? Here I am blogging just after midnight. How sad am I? Happy New Year to you and wifey Nick. I do hope that next year will be a lot better for you.

  14. Dear Nick,

    As the end of 2008 is drawing near,
    Gone are Santa and his reindeers,
    And we all switch to high gears,
    To celebrate the countdown of the coming year.

    I want to let you know you’re a great blogger,
    So much so that I’ve made myself your Follower,
    It does not matter whether you are far or near,
    You’ve brought me much laughters and tears.

    So before you get drunk with that last glass of beer,
    Waiting for 2009 to appear,
    Let me wish you now and here,
    A very happy & smashing new year!!

    : )

  15. Kadus Mama - Yes, you and my best buddy, both of you guys pun balik to school ... hehehe ...

    Getting an education for your kids can be really expensive these days, ya.

    Here's wishing you and your family a great 2009 too :D And yes, hopefully this will be the year we strike a few million bucks ... LOL!

  16. Carol - Tell me about it. I remember back in my time we used this shoes called badminton master, murah nya unlike the price of shoes these days! Need a bank loan just to buy a pair ... LOL!

    Happy new year to you and your hubby Carol.

  17. Rozella - Happy New year to you :D Hope it's a much better year and have fun with Shemah tonite :D

  18. Sweet-Girlicious - Yeah, the holidays are over and it's back to the usual daily grind. I'm definitely going to faint when the bills come in ... hehehe ...

  19. Waterlearner - Hey there, thanks for dropping by and for the wishes too :D

    Happy New Year to you and your family too.

  20. BT - Those were such strong bags weren't they? They don't sell good stuff like that anymore.

    It's more like every second they'll be uttering 'mummy this' or 'mummy that' ... LOL! I'm sure they'll grow out of it once they reach their teenage year and wouldn't be caught dead being near mummy for fear of being called mummy's boy ... LOL!

  21. Deana - Well, enjoy these stress free years for now cos once they start schooling, all hell breaks loose ... hehehe ...

  22. Marzie - Thanks for the new year wishes :D Here's wishing you and B a wonderful 2009 too :D

  23. Rose - Yeah, things just go up in price and never seem to ever go down again! And putting a child trough school really is expensive these days ...

  24. Marlene - Glad you noticed :D This year I intend to give my all for the family :D

    Tell me about it. Every school year, it's always new stuff for the boys.

    And a happy new year to you and your hubby too :D

  25. Cidao - Hey buddy, thanks for the wishes :D Here's also wishing you a great year ahead and may all your hopes and dreams come true :D

  26. Faizal - Hey pal, thanks for dropping by. I'll come right over and check it out :D Happy New year.

  27. Romany Angel - I'm the first blog you visited this year? Wow, I'm honoured :D Happy New Year to you and your family my friend :D

    You're not alone there. It just turned into a new year and here I am online answering comments ... LOL! Great party animals we've all become, huh :D

  28. Foongpc - Wow, a poem! Nice one buddy :D

    Here's wishing you and your family a great and wonderful 2009.

    Oh and I've given up beer, I have a glass of wine on my table right now and I'll probably get drunk with that ... LOL!

  29. HI! I have been searching for a picture of the old suitcase-like schoolbag for days!! Something for a trip down memory lane during our school reunion soon. We were using those bags waaay back in the 70s! If well taken care of, they could last for years and years. My boys, like yiurs, go through about 3 bags a year :(

  30. Queen Of The House - First of all, welcome to my bog :D

    I was searching for the same picture myself but just couldn't even find a single one online. Those bags were one of a kind ad it's a pity they don't have them anymore these days ...


Thank you for leaving a comment on ANYTHING GOES!