I remember at the age of 7 or 8 coming home from school and announcing to mum: Jesus loves me! And mum nearly falling off her chair in surprise. I had been told by friends that if I joined the Scripture Union club at school, not only would I be allowed to stay indoors at rainy lunchtimes but I would also be given pretty rainbow stickers that told me Jesus loved me. Now when you are 7 stickers are appealing whatever they say and given the Scottish climate I was an instant convert! My religious period lasted I think 2 weeks before I realized I actually had to sit in on bible class instead of running around the playground pretending to be one of ABBA or Charlie's Angels. I was fickle.
Tonight I had my parallel parenting moment, I think. Marcel, now 9, came home from school and asked: Mum, when I'm 13, can I have a Bar Mitzvah. Given that we live in the biggest Jewish area of Scotland and many of Marcel's neighbours and schoolmates are Jewish, I didn't think it inconceivable he might genuinely be interested in a Bar Mitzvah, so I wondered how to break it to him gently that he wasn't Jewish, though I suppose since he hasn't been christened at all he could in theory nip round to the synagogue on Saturday and ask if they'll have him, as it is just across the field behind the house. I asked gently why the big interest in Judaism. Oh I'm not interested in the religious aspect he confirmed - I hear you get a big party, presents and quite a bit of cash! I guess he's as fickle as I was at that age. That and the fact that he'd be loathe to give up his bacon rolls for Saturday brekkie.