They say better late than never. Yeah right. When it comes to the jacaranda blooming I'll take never. Sure they are most attractive. And my objection in no way relates to the fact they are an introduced species. The jacaranda, as anyone is Queensland knows, represents final exams. This year the blooming was later than normal which may have lulled people (by which I mean me) into a false sense of security. But the purple rain has begun and so to has the reign of exam terror in my house. Five weeks of high school to go and it's starting to show. Right now there are criteria sheets lurking relating to assignments on the global economic reach of Coca Cola, the comparison of poverty porn in Slumdog Millionaire and Struggle Street and international law as it relates to Assisted Reproductive Technology. Part of me says "I wish we had assessment tasks as real as this when I was at school". The other part of me says "what's so wrong with rote learning for an exam for God's sake?". All parts of me say "just hang in there and it will be over soon". That's another thing we know. One big Queensland storm and all those beautiful purple blooms become a soggy brown mass.