Wednesday, June 11, 2014
The Way We Were
While in Texas I went to my 60th class reunion at Charles H. Milby High School. Actually it was the 59th for my class but we joined the class of '54 in celebrating. I was able to make arrangements to go photograph in the school one day after the close of classes. I'm glad I did because the school is about to undergo a major renovation. The good thing about the renovation is that they are going to save the "old" original building from the 1920's.
This is still the main entry of the school. Behind the door on the right wall was the principal's office. The principal's office was never a threat but on the left wall was Mrs. McClendon's office (or was it Miss? I don't remember) but I was afraid of her. She was the Dean and she knew everything that went on in the school. One Friday for some reason I was going to skip school but I needed a book so I could study for a test on Monday. I thought I would be able to just slip into school get the book and slip out again while every one else was coming into school in the morning. Wrong! She saw me leave and I had to bring my Dad to school to meet with Mrs. McClendon to get back into school on Monday.
There were a lot of memories in those halls and they go back more than 60 years. Ned's Dad and Aunts graduated from Milby. One of Ned's Dad's best friends from Milby had a son, Jack, who was in our class. I met Jack in Junior High School and Jack was also one of Ned's best friends. In fact he was in our wedding and it was great to spend some time with him. My best friend was Margery, also in our wedding, and she was at the reunion. We had a great visit.
One of the surprises in the building was the old auditorium which has been made into the library. I was told that the facade to the stage had been saved so when I looked into the old auditorium, now library, I thought that the facade had been moved forward because the space seemed so small. Wrong again! It was exactly where it had always been. How could that be. The auditorium had seemed so big. I was in Drama and in a number of plays so I wanted to see the stage. It was still there although now being used for storage. It too seemed so much smaller than I remembered it.
Another surprise in the school was the number of administrative offices. Sixty years ago there was a Principal, an Assistant-Principal and a Dean of Students and the people who worked in the small office. Most of the original building now houses administrative offices. I'm not sure that the kids today are getting a better education but there are lots of people working on it. We never had police officers in the school but they were in the halls. That they are needed is a sad commentary on society today.
The reunion was a great celebration. There were lots of people I haven't seen since 1955 but members of our class have achieved a lot and traveled far. It was great visiting with them. One sad note was the memory board of those who had passed on. We have lost almost one-half of the class. The Memorabilia Room was wonderful. So many people have saved newspaper clippings, programs and pictures. I spent a long time in there remembering "The Way We Were." Back in the Ballroom, The Way We Are today…..We are still making the most of life and we are still dancing.