I went back to my old secondary school on Wednesday. It was strange, a place I had hated so much and fought against for years had become a memory that I almost yearned for.
I wandered back through the old corridors, I worried that they had changed the layout and I wouldn’t be able to find my way. I saw faces that I didn’t recognise, teachers that I didn’t know. Everything seemed too different, so wrong. I should still be there, wandering around in my sixth form clothes, laughing with friends, enjoying our breaks on the field in the sunshine. I saw a few people I knew wearing the old kilts and blazers and I realised how young they are.
I found myself wishing, that for just one day, or one week, I could go back there. I missed my old teachers, the banter we had in class. I missed drama, being able to be completely outrageous yet completely accepted, I even missed history, the way everyone would laugh when the teacher chose me to answer a question I clearly didn’t know. I know that I was looking at a rose tinted version on Wednesday evening, I didn’t remember the stress of exams, the pompous teachers, the pupils who loved themselves, the tears over yet more awful marks in class. Those things were forgotten as I wished I could experience it again.
I almost laughed in the corridors as I remembered the nicknames for all of our teachers, they all seemed to ring the same…Lathy, Dunny, Mardy, Bridgey, Tucker and Coopsie. Now I look back and wonder where they all started, how did we feel so comfortable with our teachers that we could rename them all with something that certainly made us feel closer to them.
Perhaps I miss it so much because this gap year has seemed so wasted, and it also forced me to grow up too quickly, I would never have thought that I would go through the things I did, I was young, naive and felt indestructible.
Now I look forward to university, making new friends, having those fun times again and enjoying the next step in my life.
Class of ’05