I actually wrote this earlier this morning, but in my haste to wrap it up and get back to work I accidentally hit the “reset” button at the bottom of my screen. Ouch.
Just sharing the pain and the memory.
I asked myself to flash back to my childhood and see what came to mind first. It was Laurel Scherer.
Why Laurel? No love interest, by any means. She was just one of my elementary school friends at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Redondo Beach, California. It was a small school, as in grades 1-4 were in one room, 5-8 in another.
If I worked at it, I would have come up with the time we played basketball at our outside courts during the fog and the fog was so thick, you couldn’t see the basket from the free throw line. There were the times my lungs would burn, because of the smog. When recesses were canceled because of a smog alert, etc.
But back to Laurel. Why, of all people, would I first think of her? Andrew Garner was probably my best friend through most of those years. Kerry Freeman, another.
But Laurel brought two incidents of my childhood to mind. Once while playing hide and seek, she caught me. We were racing back to the base, a flagpole, when somewhere deep inside my barely-developed 8-year-old brain, I thought it would be a good idea to push her so that I would be safe. I did make, but only after she went face-first into the flagpole. She chipped a tooth and has had to wear a crown ever since. Almost 50 years later, I’m still feeling bad about that.
The second memory that rushed to the top of my mind came from an incident on the school playground equipment. Back in those days, when the earth was still cooling, girls had to wear dresses to school. No pants, not yet.
So, I remember standing there one day and looking up to see Laurel sitting at the top of the slide. As she went down, her dress caught at the top of the slide so that by the time her feet touched the ground, the dress had ripped off. It was all done in one big action and the second she landed, she ran to the girls bathroom, where she hid until her mother brought her a new dress. I remember our teacher telling us that we were NOT to tease Laurel about the incident.
I didn’t. But to this day, it’s still one of the funniest real things I ever saw happen.
Who jumps to the top of your memory?
Laurel, where ever you are out there, one more apology and a thank you for one of those memories that last a lifetime.