Posted to OGR on 08/15/2010
This week, the kids in my neighborhood go back to school. Supplies are bought, clothes made ready and everyone is ready for the big day. The start of school was a highlight of my youth, especially my high school years. I remember impatiently waiting for the bus to come rolling up with all my friends. As soon as I was on board, I headed straight for them in our spot on the bus and began the social part of the school day. Those first few weeks of school, the gears were shifting from lazy summer days to a frenzied fall full of classes, football, bands and parties. Of course we were checking out the new kids that either were starting high school or moved into the city over the summer. There was usually a new girl that got my teen-aged heart pumping harder than normal. As a junior and senior, I would ride to school with a small group of friends and my favorite teacher who retired from the Navy and moved into the neighborhood my junior year. Most of the other kids switched from the bus to cars too. But I missed that special time early in the morning with the sunshine glinting through the windows, shining on our happy smiling faces as we were off on our daily adventure. Those were special days!
Do you remember oilcloth? When I was in grade school, my mother used to cover my books with oilcloth to protect them so we would not have to pay for damages at the end of the school year. By time I was in high school, I was doing that myself. Usually, oilcloth came in a checkered pattern, either red and white or blue and white. It was everywhere, tablecloths, and shelf and drawer linings, in addition to those book covers. What I remember most is the smell of new oilcloth and the slightly slick touch that eventually wore off over the school year. Even today, when I walk into a restaurant that has oilcloth tablecloths, I remember those heady days of the start of school. Oh MY!
Copyright 2010 Rick Wrigley