Back to School ..... Purse meet Shops

Today I went to buy my son 5 items of school clothing / bag.  I left the store having parted with R1100.

For this I had 2 thin navy blue golf shirts with a simple gold badge on, 2 plain navy sports shorts with a drawstring and a sports bag.  The sports bag literally was the cheapest item ..... because golf shirts with badges cost R236.  Each.

I was left reeling.  We were fortunate enough to have family who helped buy all the other items that were badly needed for school this year.

But as I left the shop I was wondering and worrying about all those people who cannot afford this, who maybe don't have someone to help them buy the clothing.  White shirts and grey pants are still ok, but the branded school items like jerseys, sports kit, caps, socks, blazers and on and on .... are across the board ..... expensive for all schools.  I still battle to understand how a navy blue golf shirt becomes R200+ because of a badge.

The school supplier was very busy and I watched a plethera of well known school's stuff pass over the counter.  I recognized the parents ... they looked a bit shell shocked.  I also recognized the look in the eye of the parents who had a huge piece of their budget taken away in that store, and who were now calculating how to make ends meet till month end.  There are a growing number of these.

Yes there are 2nd hand clothing items available at most schools, and because my son is growing at the speed of light I ensure that every last item we have is donated to that shop, but there are limited clothing amounts there, and as I said, a growing number of parents needing to use that shop.

Once you have added on a minimum of R1500 + for textbooks (more if you are below Gr 10) and then the stationery items, January becomes quite a nightmare on the back of having our kids home for 6 weeks of holiday.

And yes all parents did it, from Noah's ark onwards.  Except in that time school clothes / stationery / books did not swallow up one person's entire salary for a month.

So today I pray for all those for whom this is a stressful month.

I cannot help but wonder about standardized school uniforms ........

till soon
c'est la vie xxx

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