Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The Last Ride

In my previous post, I noted that the following day would be the last time to take my high school graduating daughter to school. It went down like this:

Allister and I were looking forward to the Last Ride. The I-Pod-free conversation (an achievement in itself) started immediately. There was a lot to cover, so we jumped right.

The "fish story" got first airing. Knowing that Allister had caught the biggest fish during the weekend competition among first graders, we (I) were looking forward to the big announcement and award ceremony during the morning convocation. But to our (my) surprise, it was announced as a "tie" for first place. Well, apparently little Susie "had" the big fish on her line, but it got off just before it could be snagged. Well, now it's decision time for father. Does he stop the proceedings in progress and make the point that the fish had to be "caught," or does he wait and approach the Headmaster with WTF! Thinking that it would be too haunting to wear the "angry fish father" moniker for the next twelve years, I let it go. But the scar, as I hope you can tell, is still there.

The next memory dealt with "brilliant academic sense" versus "plain ole common sense." The male parents were matched in a basketball game as a school fundraiser. So, here are these late 30s and 40 plus men going at it on the court. My team was up by at least 10 points by halftime, and my jumper was working from the top of the key (Yes!). And while we expected the students to have a cheering competition or maybe some musical entertainment for half-time, the administrators, instead, held a spelling bee competition -- for 45 minutes!! Yes, a spelling bee at half-time for more than 45 frickin minutes!! As our old ... posteriors were stiffening, we wondered if we could regain our momentum going into the second half. Low and behold, we eeked out a victory, by two points, but the lesson had been learned: Yes, the folks running the school had great "academic sense," but little "good ole common sense." We had a good laugh on that one.

We also talked about the Science Fair story -- too long for this post -- but bottom line: she didn't get to go for an overnight stay at the St. Louis Science Center even though her test scores were higher than two other students who were selected. We (wifey and I) called the Headmaster on the carpet for that one. (details later)

By now we were nearing the end of the Last Ride. A few comments about the most engaging teacher, or the wierdest one, as well as thoughts about friends who once attended the school but moved away. Given her academic success over the past 12 years, we began to realize how fortunate her journey had been by attending The Governor French Academy. Afterall, we concluded, it's a College Preparatory School, and after today's classes, she would be well-prepared to begin that journey in the fall.

It hasn't hit me until right now, at this very moment, how special it was during that Last Ride.

1 comment:

  1. Great story. It is important that you write about the things that matter to you—as we (fathers/ parents) can see similar parallels in our own lives.