Facebook has opened up my old world again. I’ve been down in Texas for over fifteen years – and mostly thrilled to be here. Sure, there’s the heat. Sure, there’s the humidity. Sure, there are the mosquitoes big enough to carry guns. (But, they’re not able to qualify to carry concealed, so it’s all good. I mean, where would they be able to conceal them anyway? They are mosquitoes…but I disgress…)
The thing is, in Texas, the school year doesn’t start in September. It starts in August. It used to start in mid or early August, but now it waits until the last or next to last week of the month. Still, at first it was weird to get used to. I grew up being able to pick out something to wear for my first day of school that might involve jeans or even – gasp! – long sleeves! Not so much down here where it’s still hitting 100 degrees of higher when the call to the classroom comes out.
Here it is now, the day after Labor Day, and suddenly people I knew once upon a time – and, most importantly, don’t mind knowing again – start posting up pictures and messages of kids going back to school up in the not-so-great not-so-white north. (Sorry, NJ just doesn’t have it going on!)
It’s weird, like looking through an old times Sears catalog that’s selling buggies and gingham fabric. The concept of school starting in September seems like something out of the past. In my mind, that was when school *used* to begin, way back when. When I left the state, I left the school year behind, too, and assumed it changed like I had. No more September to June. Now it should be August to May. It’s like when I pull up the weather for Maplewood. It’s cold up there! And somehow my brain has decided that we should share the weather, so it always comes with that moment of shock – 60 degrees? How can it be 60 degrees? It’s not December yet! My now Tex-ified brain thinks.
Anyway, to stay on point: back to school.
As a perpetual student myself, and one who teaches and takes classes year round, you’d think that the old back to school vibe would be wasted on me. Yet I still get caught up in the excitement, thrilled to buy notebooks and pens for virtual classes that don’t need them. Maybe that’s what’s really missing from the newfangled online education – no more pencils, no more books…