September 17, 2019 was a perfect day in my life. I spent it with my 9 year old grandson and 23 other 4th graders. We had a great day. I rode a school bus for the first time in like 40 years. It had air conditioning and survelliance cameras. It had nice blue seats. the bus was filled with chattering excited 4th graders. With names like Rayne, Meshaki, Emerson, Easton and 2 different Nevaeh’s, the bus was full of excitement.
My grandson was in charge, this was his day. I picked him up early and the first thing he said was, “did you bring your lunch?” “no, was I supposed to?” yes but don’t worry I will share mine. I said oh buddy, no we can just stop at 7/11 and get something for Grandma.
So we stopped at 7/11 and selected a cheese grapes combo pack and a 2 drinks ( because you don’t want to get thirsty when you are on an all day trip to the museum). Emerson is always prepared.
So we proceeded to school, we must be on time. He even had me email the teacher to confirm what door we needed to walk through. As we proceeded through the door he pointed me towards his classroom up the stairs and and on the right. He exited to the playground, his regular morning ritual.
As I walked the school stairs towards his room, it felt all too familiar in this hallway, the few steps up to his classroom. Memories flooded back, I had attended this school 55 years ago myself. I attended kindergarten, 1st and 2nd grade in this school. Mrs. Johnson, Mrs. Davis those were my memories. Mrs. Davis fell down those stairs and broke her leg. I fell off the slide on the old playground out back, because I insisted on wearing my “stupid shoes” patent leather, my favorites. Wow, what a trip.
As I watched the children file into the classroom, dutifully dropping off their lunches in the bucket in front of the door for the field trip and continuing into their classroom and completing the morning duties. They quickly changed into their color coded shirts and put away their chromebooks. That’s when I realized this was a very different classroom than the one of my memories.
As we filed in a single file line to the waiting school bus, I passed by familiar doors and classrooms. As we approached the bus and climbed aboard it was again familiar but not. This was a high tech bus, complete with survelliance cameras and air conditioning. Emerson was in high spirits and he selected our seat and and we settled in for the 40 minute ride to the museum. He was so happy.
We paused at the railroad track and the bus fell silent when a group of fisted hands lifted up in the air. The doors opened and the driver declared clear. The chatter resumed. As we arrived at the museum, Emerson provided more instructions, we go into a room in the back and do school work first and then we get to visit some areas of the museum. I joined his group at the table and helped out the volunteer former teacher doing a favor for a friend. We had 4 kids at our table and they all worked well together. We complete our assignments and went on to explore the museum, under close supervision of course. Soon it was lunch time.
As we proceeded to our table Emerson opened his paper bag and dumped his lunch on the table. It was a well rounded lunch and he didn’t eat carrots because they were without ranch dip. A boy has to have his principals. After lunch more exploring to be done and then we boarded the bus for home. We talked and chatted the entire way back to school.
As we approached the school Emerson said “it was the best day, because you were here Grandma, we don’t get to spend many days just the two of us”
And that was the ending to a perfect day.
Until Next Time,