Thursday, November 10, 2011

Selected Entries: May 2004

In May of 2004 I was newly turned 16 and preoccupied with my family's impending departure from Beautiful Town, which finally took place at the end of the month. To my adolescent self the two and a half years we'd spent there seemed like an eternity and it was heart wrenching to leave the only place I'd been happy to call home.

May 5, 2004

I stayed after for Algebra today, and Dad asked if I’d actually been in detention. What? I can’t believe he doesn’t trust me! I mean, jeez, it’s not like I’m some kid who gets into trouble all the time; in two years of high school I’ve had three detentions! I don’t think that my most recent one was justified.

School was so funny today that I thought I’d collapse, especially in third mod. I should explain. In Chorus, a new student teacher is helping our regular choral director, Ms. Chorus Teacher. The student teacher’s name is Mr. Blowfish [so christened for his resemblance to the animal whenever he sang]. Oh, my gosh. Words just don’t do justice to the hilarity that man never fails to evoke.

May 6, 2004

Well, this is unexpected. You see, I was in Journal 10 yesterday. At the evening’s conclusion I calmly put the journal into a drawer underneath of my desk, but when I got home the desk was gone. The journal (along with Journals 8 and 9) has been packed away. We’re moving, you see, and quite soon. My mother got promoted so we have to relocate to Central City, Deep South State. Right now we’re leaving Beautiful Town, Native State. We’ve been here for two years, and they were some of the best times in my young life.

May 9, 2004

I received a little card from Perfect Cousin today. It was issued by her school, announcing that graduation ceremonies will be held on May 23, 2004. Enclosed were two pictures of Perfect Cousin. In one she wore her cap and gown, and in the other she is elegantly dressed and made up. I can’t believe that Perfect will graduate from high school in two weeks.

When I first met her she was only ten years old.

I mean, this is the girl who we did séances with and who acted as Perfect, Queen of Renaldi. It’s just difficult to comprehend how quickly the years are passing before they’re already gone.

Last night I think I connected with Jesus. I was sitting in the hot tub, staring up at a single bright star, thinking about Lord Jesus and about the future. In that moment I felt so comforted, as if my Savior was right there with me, and I knew that everything would be okay. Then my logic rose its head in question, and a terrible thought occurred to me: what if I was just a coincidentally formed biological product of evolution staring up at a burning ball of gas billions of miles distant, receiving assurance from a deity that wasn’t there? I told myself that it couldn’t be, and I got out of the hot tub.

May 16, 2004

“I feel like I’ve known you forever,” First Twin said yesterday.

His words seemed to explain everything perfectly. We feel like we’ve known them forever, too. And it’s going to be so strange, not living in the same neighborhood, not playing tag, not ever seeing our friends again. I’m going to miss this place so much. It’s hard to imagine how everything will be.

Tonight is Mom’s last night here.

May 18, 2004

Blonde Friend and I spoke tonight. She might come over to my house on Friday afternoon, just to hang out and rehash old times. I feel like it’s something we have to do. She and I have been friends forever. I wouldn’t feel right about leaving without meeting her again.

In the same way, it’s like a hole in my heart that Lacrosse Boy and Military Boy probably won’t come over this weekend. I thought it would all go on forever. That’s really how it seemed.

May 22, 2004

My last Saturday here was a beautiful, sun-soaked day. I still can’t quite grasp that this is truly my last weekend living here. I’m thinking, “Oh, we’ll do this next weekend,” but there is no next weekend. It’s very odd. I’ve spent so many Fridays and Saturdays with all of my friends that I suppose I thought it would go on forever.

Today was a wondrous conclusion to two years of happiness and joy. What magic we had! How blessed were we to be surrounded by so many funny, intelligent, talented, incredible people! I thank God for these two years. I've been so blessed.

May 26, 2004

Today was Operation Get Your Food On, the party my friends threw for me in U.S. History. It's a memory that I’ll treasure forever. It was, across the board, a resounding success. I walked into United States History carrying Doritos, plastic cups, and root beer, while yelling, “Midwestern Pirate!” Brianna had potato chips; Anne-Marie had doughnuts; Minders had tortillas, salsa, and plates; and some kind soul thought to bring in chocolate chip cookies, Fig Newtons, and Oreos. It was all quite a going-away present.

May 28, 2004

Yesterday, May 27, 2004, was a fitting send-off from Beautiful Town High School. In first mod I had to leave Crazy English Teacher's room so as to better take my final exam (which consisted of a criticism on Maya Angelou’s “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings”). Second mod was Algebra with Midget Math Teacher. I didn’t even pretend to pay attention, but rather I read. Good old Midget Math Teacher, in characteristic Midget Math Teacher style, had me shut my book and she gave me a worksheet. At the end of class she suggested (as politely as possible) that I not take any other math courses. I’m inclined to agree with her, but I worry that without math I won’t get into a good college. I’ll just have to suffer through and hope to God that He’ll help me.

Third mod (Chorus), was full of yearbook signings and goodbyes. I adopted several popular songs to my own lyrics (“Oh, Baby, Baby,” “I Can Save You”) with hilarious results.

Fourth mod was la clase de espanol with non other than la Evsterooni, otherwise known as Ms. Evans. I was about ten minutes late and I suppose they thought I wasn’t going to make it because the room erupted into cheers and clapping when I entered and Brunette Girl started crying.

I went into a back room to take my final, then emerged at the very end of class, still unfinished. Evsterooni agreed to let me take it home if I used the honor code, which essentially consists of the teacher hoping that I don’t cheat and lie about it. Me being me I wouldn’t cheat. I mean, there was a Spanish-English dictionary sitting right on the desk where I was taking my exam and I didn’t even open it. Not the smartest thing that Evster’s ever done, I can say that (leaving that dictionary on the desk).

I went home and an hour later we drove out of Beautiful Town. It was two years and five months to the day.


Arizaphale said...

Next time you're feeling down, just remember how loved you were in Beautiful Town. Oh and btw, I once took a make up Science test in my teacher's office next to a FULL ashtray of cigarette butts!! Those were the good old days.......

laura b. said...

This was such a positive and hopeful post from the young BB. Very nice to read. Thank you.

Thomas said...

Wonderful that you kept those journals. It's one thing to think back to the time when you were a teen, but to actually have the words: priceless.