Friday, August 8, 2008

Time and perception

Years ago I attended a boarding school in St. Thomas, Ontario. You may remember that it burned down recently (clicky) which resulted in a ton of activity on Facebook, the brilliant social network site. Many of us have found each other again.

Don’t get me wrong, being sent to boarding school, all full of teenage angst and insecurity, was never an experience I wanted to hold dear so over the years I have really let it go and have only a spotty recollection of the day-to-day activities.

What I find amazing is that I remember the introverted, scared, angry, lost, frightened, lonely and insecure teenager. Through this reconnection process, it is clear that my perception of myself is not what others remember.

This note came in yesterday from Claudia:

THIS IS A GREAT PICTURE OF YOUR HUSBAND AND YOU!!!!
I REMEMBER YOU WELL AS A CANADIAN TALL SMART GIRL WHO READ SOMETHING TO US ON OUR GRADUATION DAY!!!
YOU WERE PRESIDENT OF THE ALMA GIRLS OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT, AM I RIGHT???
I DO UNDERSTAND THAT YOU ARE A WRITER????
HOW ARE YOU DOING NOW???
ARE YOU LIVING IN TORONTO???
IT IS SO GOOD TO FIND OLD FRIENDS FROM ALMA!!!!
NOW I AM IN TOUCH WITH MY ROOMIES AND SOME OTHER FRIENDS YOU KNOW!
I WILL BE IN TOUCH!

Twenty-five years has not changed Claudia one bit. She’s just a tiny slip of a person … with a big personality … thus, the CAPITALS!! Of the school population the Canadian girls made up the vast minority with most of the students arriving from Hong Kong, Trinidad and Mexico. It was truly a multi-cultural experience. (You really don’t understand a culture until you have to share a bathroom with 20 others!)

Other than the fact I’m not a writer, yet, she’s got it mostly right. I had to laugh that what I read on graduation day was my Valedictory address. I’m surprised she remembered! Funny.

Claudia also posted a number of photos. I might regret this, but, here are a few with me in them (remember, the ‘80s were not a good fashion decade!):


I'm in the second row, looking straight at the camera almost in the middle. It's a jumble of people so hard to tell you exactly (and I'm really terrible at Photoshop!)

I believe this was one of our days at Port Stanley. Wow, I wonder what happened to all of those girls!

I was so proud of my very first Ralph Lauren outfit. Wasn't I hot? Bwahaha! Clearly I could pick out the only 'bad' designer outfit in the store! I remember this photo - the Mexican girls were leaving to go to an amusement park and I didn't know a photo was being taken. I jumped down right after. I was waiting for some girlfriends so that we could go to the Rendezvous restaurant for fries and gravy. Why? We always went there on the weekends we were "stuck" at school!

Some days I'm still that teenage girl filled with angst and insecurity. I just learned how to hide it better. Or, maybe I hid it well then, too!

1 comment:

Midnite Scrapper said...

I really agree with what you're saying. I was/am the same way, too. I think part of the way I acted on the outside was because it was kind of a "survival of the fittest" thing. I grew up having to move and start a new school every year (army brat). Now I just "do" - feelings are kept inside. I have matured of course, but it is still there.