Wednesday, August 11, 2004

retrieving my things

Tim and I got my 30 boxes of 16 years worth of teaching stuff from MHS. On the way to school I stopped for gas and saw one of the most precious students I've ever known, John Ellis, at the gas station. That seemed like a sign to me. On the way home Tim and I ate at Trey Yuen and the mother of one of my former students saw us eating and paid for our lunch. At my new school, FD, a custodian helped us bring the boxes up the terracotta steps to my room, beautiful room 219. Then another custodian, took me for a tour of the school. One of the science classrooms has glass paned cabinets and a horse skeleton atop a riser in the back of the room. A woman wheeling a cart in with old scientific measuring devices told me a movie was being filmed at the school. I said, "If you need an English teacher in this movie of yours, I'm your gal."
I have a new philosophy: that anything I become part of, my intention will be to try to make it better. I will make that room at FD beautiful. I will help those children who come into my life find their beauty.
The school was buillt in 1939 during Roosevelt's presidency. I think it was a federal works project. Depression era. The decor is art deco, but subtle. I see the occasional detail. It's a gorgeous place that's only slightly crumbling. Nothing serious. Needs some plaster and paint, some glazing, like that. When I said to the custodian that this was a beautiful school she said thank you like she felt in part responsible for its beauty. I loved that. I remember how much I loved it when Eddie told me that he felt it was a joint effort among all of the people who work in a school to make it good for our students. I love Eddie. I wish I could have seen him today.

Disposed of: two belts

Melanie Plesh


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