What does 'simmer' mean? What the university of life will be teaching over the coming weeks
The major discoveries to be made by students leaving home for the first time over the next few weeks will not be made in lecture theatres or science labs but in the flats or houses in which they lodge.
They will discover that the fridge does not refill itself, that self-cleaning dishes are yet to be invented and that wet towels left in a heap on bathroom floors tend to stink.
One woman who navigated these waters some time ago told me about delivering her son to a flat in Dublin for his first sojourn away from home. He happily waved her goodbye eager to begin his student days and life away from home.
Two days later she got a call looking for information.
“Mam,” he asked, “what does ‘simmer’ mean?”. There will be many a young lad and a young lassie around the country seeking answers to such questions and more over the coming weeks and months, answers that will not be found in the library but in the university of life.