Growing up in Malta is a special and unique experience that only those of us who have lived through it can ever fully understand. But if there was ever a medium that could explain the emotions perfectly, a full-blown musical would probably be the closest to achieving this.
But what songs would feature in ‘Growing up in Malta, the Musical’? Well, here are nine suggestions to get us started.
1. Picking the item you were set up to choose at your Quċċija
Song: Bring Honour To Us All – Mulan
Whether it’s your dance-teacher aunt putting the brightest pair of ballet shoes into the mix, or your accountant-cousin trying to push the calculator your way, everyone is hoping you’ll pick their career path and they’ll have a protégé for life.
2. Watching as your parents pre-determine your future career based off your Common Entrance results
Song: Mother Knows Best – Tangled
“Maths u Science 80s ta! Perit ħa jsirli t-tifel.”
“Taf kemm marret tajjeb fl-Ingliż u l-Malti hux? Avukatessa in the making.”
3. Having your first sex-ed class in Form 4
Song: Hellfire – Hunchback
It’s all doom and gloom – did you ever have seen a breast?! HELLFIRE. Did you accidentally touch yourself in the shower?! It’s all over for you.
4. Starting Sixth Form and watching people from boys-only/girls-only schools interact
Song: The Internet Is For Porn
The interaction is alien; both want to impress each other and distance themselves from the weirdness in equal measures.
5. When your Nanna talks about you getting into University
Song: Zero To Hero
No one is prouder of your achievements. From her friends at the boċċi club to the pigeons on the promenade, every chance she gets she’ll be praising your achievements (and embellishing them a bit along the way).
6. Coming back from a semester of Erasmus
Song: I’m Not Pregnant, I’m Just Fat
Maltese people are not used to living alone, so the second we have our own flat our calorie consumption skyrockets. You then have to spend the next few months explaining the extra kilos.
7. Getting your first job and hanging out with people outside your small circle of friends
Song: Everyone’s A Little Bit Racist
Seriously, everyone is and it’s so shocking when you first realise this.
8. Meeting a foreigner you like and trying to convince them your lifestyle/relationship with your parents is normal back in Malta
Song: Gay Or European – Legally Blonde (The Musical)
It’s not our fault we live at home till we’re 30 or married. Well, maybe it is our fault but still. Back home it’s not weird so stop looking at us like that.
9. Getting married, moving out and trying to be independent
Song: Stay With Me – Into The Woods
There’s no escaping the guilt. You could be married for ten years and still get asked if you need help with the laundry or if you’re eating enough.