Monday, May 11, 2009

His First Stomping Grounds

I had the fantastic opportunity this weekend to see where my fiance grew up. We walked through the church and elementary school. The church was built in the traditional style with all those fun Latin church terms like "nave" and "transept" and "chancel." I was impressed by the length of the nave and the awesome silence. Maybe it's me (and it likely is), but smaller churches or plain churches don't have that resounding, reverent, purposeful silence. It takes an organ, a high ceiling, and clacking of rosary beads to induce such a profound silence.

The Boy's elementary school was... quaint. That's almost an unfortunate term because it wasn't quaint in that mocking kind of way, but small and cute and like elementary schools in movies where there aren't marks on the walls or safety glass with metal wires in between them. The halls were carpeted, the paint fresh, and the full-size lockers matching up and down both sides of the well-lit hallway.

Compare that to my elementary school where the toilet stalls were often missing doors, the water undrinkable and barely running, and cracked chalkboards. Our mismatched tile flooring and cracked and peeling lead-based paint hid asbestos and mice. If only I was exaggerating! I could say that my school buildings built character. The buildings had character. They had echoes and creaking noises and loud ventilation. Part of me misses it, but I'm also glad they tore down that health hazard of a building.

I had a great time exploring The Boy's first stomping grounds. One thing seems to be sure: it's not the building that makes a school. We both had great teachers who were invested in our education. Parents played a large role in that--and we are both thankful for our good teachers and great parents. Trite, maybe, but true.

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