Thursday, July 10, 2008

Caught by the High School Principal!

I haven't been to my high school alma mater for more than a decade now (whoops! buking ang age ko!) and I guess I just never had a reason to visit. The last time I visited was when I got my yearbook.

I was quite excited to visit when I got an invitation. I was so atat I arrived 30 minutes before my appointment and asked permission to go and explore the campus first before settling down for the meeting. I wanted to bonk my head for wearing heeled shoes since I couldn't move around the place as fast as I could. I just had a chance to go check out the high school department and wasn't able to peek at the new buildings at the grade school area.

While walking around I couldn't help but remember the mundane things I used to do back when I was a kid.

The field where we would hang out after eating, marched during CAT, held field dances and where I usually got dizzy whenever we had Misa ng Bayan.

The hall where we held carpentry and electricity class. My alma mater's an all-girls school so you can just imagine how many times we blew up the fuse box because of our lamp projects. I was also in this area when the 90s big earthquake happened.

The stairs where I slipped several times. It's also near the prayer room which I visited every morning before class. And that door at the bottom of the stairs was my homeroom when I was a junior in high school.

Both grade school and high school memories came flooding back when I passed by the hall where my grade 4 classroom was. I couldn't help but look for the lunch counter where I ate with my high school friends everyday (and I still hang-out with them actually). Each step I took on the stairs (where I slipped several times) brought back a lot of happy memories and memories of feeling anxious due to Physics, Geometry and my-all-time-not-favorite Filipino-Balarila class. I even felt like I was wearing my uniform once again (I'm sure it wouldn't fit me now because I'm so huge already).

The classrooms were closed. Back in high school we only had aircons in AVRs, so I felt like the place was deserted. When I started walking towards the high school principal's office I automatically straightened my back, patted my hair down and walked the way we were taught ("carry your shoes girls! don't drag it!"). I saw a nun walking towards me and I felt a bit sheepish. I was loitering around and I thought I was going to get a scolding, but then she smiled, said hello and asked if I was looking for an office. I realized too that high school was already half my life ago and that I am my own person now. So I smiled back and introduced myself as an alumna wandering around. I was glad to meet the Sister Mikey, the current high school principal.
I'm sure my teachers from grade school and high school would be surprised on how I turned out. I was a shy, gawky kid with braces (ala Betty Lafea? LOL!), who'd go tongue-tied during speech classes and I never really raised my hand to recite (and here I am forcing my kid to do it ha-ha-ha). Well I'm still the same, just a bit crazier! I realize though that if it wasn't for my third grade teacher who scolded me a lot about my English compositions I don't think I would've pushed hard to learn how to write better. Or if not for my super bait and matyagang speech class teacher I wouldn't have that teenie-bit of self-confidence to believe that I could actually do speaking engagements "when I grow up".

LOL. So much drama, but ya-know I'm sure it's what you'll feel too if you have not gone to your high school alma mater for more than a decade.

Have you visited your high school recently?