It was in school that we made our first friends, competed to excel, hoped for places in the sports teams and scholastic leagues, and learned our first lessons about life.
What is it about high school?
I remain friends with those I knew before I entered first grade (I didn’t go to kindergarten).
I have friends who lived in one city/town all their lives and attended the same schools with others all throughout their school years.
My school years were divided among three towns: Springer, New Mexico; Tucumcari, New Mexico and sophomore through senior year in Farmington, New Mexico. Before moving to Farmington, we walked or bicycled everywhere – everywhere.
But, I repeat: what is it about high school that holds my memories the strongest and is so precious?
Perhaps, because those years were the Real Growing Up Years. World War II was in the past and we were beneficiaries of the post-war prosperity.
My uncles served in Korea, but we were too young for Korea and Vietnam was in the future (although several of my classmates did serve in Vietnam). Life was uncomplicated. My father went to work and my mother stayed home. I wasn’t expected to do much more than go to school, play, and stay out of trouble. There were kids everywhere and we walked everywhere. A few of my friends had cars and we would sometimes all pile in and ‘cruise’ town or congregate at the drugstore – priming the jukebox with coins. In those days, no one worried much about strangers lurking in the shadows. Everyone knew everyone and although we were allowed much freedom, our folks knew (generally) where we were and that we would be home by dinnertime.
There were, of course, mothers who worked outside the home during these years. However, for the most part, we had extended families and/or close friends nearby and we certainly felt safe. And we were.
All things considered, I think I was very fortunate to grow up in the 1950s.
Farmington friends: the Scorpio Tales newsletter is ALMOST in the mail. This issue has some old (fifties) photos and information and some current material. In some ways, those days seem so distant and in another, the memories are quite clear.
[Send YOUR reminisces for the next issue!]