IF you’re a working parent, you may be familiar with the dread that hits you when you realise your child is too ill to be admitted to their crèche or daycare centre. This is particularly troublesome when it comes to an infectious disease such as chicken pox, which crèches have a zero tolerance policy on in order to keep the other kids free from infection.
But with your household finances finely tuned and unable to withstand the loss of wages that would come with keeping a child at home, what’s a parent to do? Pay for a week’s worth of crèche while you simultaneously miss out on a week’s income? Not an option in this country; it’s time to get sneaky.
1) Drop ‘n run
This is the simplest tactic when dropping a pox-ridden kid off; simply hand them off in the morning and leg it. Don’t wait around to answer questions about the temperature your child seemed to be running the previous day, don’t stand there while the crèche worker notices an outbreak of telltale spots on your child’s face. Just drop and run. By the time you get a call from the crèche to say you have to come pick your kid up, you can stay at work all day and blame it on the trains or something. ‘I’ll be right back!’ Yeah, at half five, ha ha.
2) Convert to Islam
If crèche is wondering why your child has turned up wearing a full Burka, simply inform them that your whole family has converted to Islam. Legally, they cannot force your child to remove the traditional garb and those itchy spots will go unnoticed for the duration. They may question why your male child is wearing the traditional female attire, but you can bamboozle them by saying you’re like a super Muslim or something.
3) Say that it’s payback for all the diseases your kid contracted in crèche
Crèches are petri-dishes of disease and infection for kids. They’ll pick up a sniffle or a cough or conjunctivitis or any number of similar illnesses on a weekly basis. Good for the immune system, you’re told. Well, it’s payback time! If your kid gave my kid the flu, then it’s only fair that my kid gives your kid chicken pox. Granted, chicken pox is much more serious than the flu, but who’s counting? Sickness is sickness, and I can’t miss a day’s work because of it. It’s not my fault the system is weighted against working parents. Let’s all just cut each other some slack here and get on with rubbing ointment on our itchy kids.