As I took photos last week at the Carbon High graduation, I wondered what must be going through the minds of those in the blue and white on the floor of the BDAC. I just hope it was more than was in my head the night I wore a black robe and left Murray High School in late May 1970.
I just remember how glad I was when the long, boring ceremony was over and I could get out of there, take my girlfriend to dinner and start life without public education.
But there were some things I was not thinking about at the time, some things I and probably they, could never recognize at the time of commencement.
One of those things was the friends you lose forever. Not that they still aren't friends, or maybe even couldn't be friends again after 34 long years of more school (college), endless hours of work and kids who never turn out the way you think they should. But that relationship will never be the same; for the 13 years of my life between age 5 and 18 I spent nine months of every year with largely the same group of people. Almost every day something happens that makes me think of one of my public school classmates, yet I have no idea where they are or what they are doing now.
I know a lot of people who never think twice about their high school days. For most of them it wasn't a good time. For me it was. It was a time when I had relatively no responsibility (as compared to today), I could make really stupid mistakes and I would just be called a dumb kid (now I am just called dumb) and the whole world was there for the taking.
I guess the most profound thought I had during the graduation of the class of 2004 was that this is the last time this group will ever be all together again. No matter how successful a reunion they may ever have in the future, they will never all be in the same room again.
It's a sad thing to lose a family, and that's what they had become after so many years together. But we all move on, in time, life and space.
All I can say is "congratuations" and use your time wisely because there isn't as much of it as you may think there is at your tender age.