Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The double-digit years' gap

Well, I guess this has become old home week.

Yesterday, former high school classmate Jenny Beets and I got together for lunch at Litton's. Gosh, it was hard not to order that famous burger.

Anyway, we got caught up on this and that, life's little moments, ups and downs. Then she asked if I had time to run up to the high school.

"Sure," said I.

So off we went. Jenny chatted with her old dance team sponsor, Tina Perry, in the office. Then, we sneaked into Trina Polston's classroom so Jenny could chat with Mrs. P.

Jenny says the school hasn't changed at all. And, in a lot of ways, it hasn't.

But it never has felt right to me since the spring day I left it in 1996. And, I finally figured out why --

The people made that place. It wasn't the bricks-and-mortar, the stairs that lead to nowhere, the cramped locker room. It was the people.

For good and bad, too. I choose to remember most of it through rose-colored glasses. But, of course, there were folks you didn't like and hope you never see again. And bad memories, too. Some you'd like to forget. Some you can't.

We tried to get in to see Marcia Southern, but she was in the midst of a lecture we hated to interrupt. Maybe next time.

As I drove back to the office, I realized how neat it was to tour that place with a classmate. Whenever I go there alone -- with my work -- I view the old school clinically, as a place to be in order to do a job.

For a few minutes, though, the old memories came back, and the double-digit years' gap seemed but yesterday.

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