There’s “old-school” and then, there’s “THE old school” …

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It was another chilly morning, with the digital thermostat registering a mere 70 degrees in the house when I suited up to leave on my walk. Outside it was 52 degrees.  I really wasn’t sure what to wear.  Mother Nature has the weather in a constant state of flux and I have vowed not to switch on the furnace, nor to return to a heavy coat again until Fall.  It is just not right for the first week of June, although I hear we are getting a big warm-up this weekend.

But, I kind of like when it is cool and breezy, like today, over hot and sticky. This morning the sun WAS out and that was good, but it was not warming me up much.

I am still forced to take the big detour around Pagel Avenue, until the construction work is finished at the end of June. Alas, my quickest route to the Park as I go to and fro, has me passing my former elementary school twice a day.

I only attended Frank G. Mixter Elementary School for one school year, before making the big leap to junior high, which is termed “middle school” now.

It was not a year of fun, as I’ve mentioned in prior blogposts. Instead, that 1966-67 school year was filled with classmates poking fun at me, this little Canadian girl, who pronounced words differently, and, even Mr. Schreiber, our sixth grade teacher, mocked my accent and pronunciation of words, and always ridiculed me before my peers.  I will never forgive him since he made me read aloud to the class, who snickered at my recitation of whatever text I was forced to repeat.

I won’t dwell on those unhappy days for this post, but, instead will tell you that it was with much glee that I skipped out of those double doors in June 1967, once school was done for the Summer. I was only too happy to move on.

school door

But today, as I passed Mixter Elementary School, those memories came flooding back, and, the recognition that it was still another one of those monumental anniversaries – I cannot believe that I am marking fifty years since I left the stomping grounds of that old school.

My former elementary school, once a source of childhood angst, closed permanently in 2009, then reopened as a school for special needs students, ages 18-26. The students attend a day program which is geared to help them learn independent living skills, and, even more importantly, eventual employability.  At the Mixter Institute for Transition, there is even a thrift store which is operated by the students, with proceeds going toward field trips or other enrichment experiences for the program attendees.

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I think the students were going on a trip as there were adults accompanying the group, and, I watched them file, one by one, out of the front of the school and queue up for the bus.  The bus driver waited patiently, as the contingent of students and other attendees, approached the bus.  Meanwhile, her vehicle was emitting diesel-fuel-ridden puffs of smoke, which noxious smell filled my nostrils in the brisk morning air.  Occasionally, she jumped up to help shepherd a student to his or her seat.

I rounded the corner and left the bus and its driver, the passel of passengers and all those memories from five decades ago behind.

I then concentrated on getting to Council Point Park, where I hustled along the trail to keep warm and get as many steps in as possible before heading home … and, oh yes … along the way, I tendered peanuts to the squirrels and positioned two more painted rocks so they were visible along the perimeter path.

Life is sweet and simple sometimes, even simpler than back at the old school.

About lindasschaub

This is my first blog and I enjoy writing each and every post immensely. I started a walking regimen in 2011 and decided to create a blog as a means of memorializing the people, places and things I see on my daily walks. I have always enjoyed people watching, and so my blog is peppered with folks I meet, or reflections of characters I have known through the years. Often something piques my interest, or evokes a pleasant memory from my memory bank, and this becomes a “slice o’ life” blog post that day. I respect and appreciate nature and my interaction with Mother Nature’s gifts is also a common theme. Sometimes the most-ordinary items become fodder for points to ponder over and touch upon. My career has been in the legal field and I have been a legal secretary for over three decades, primarily working in downtown Detroit, and now working from my home. I graduated from Wayne State University with a degree in print journalism in 1978, although I’ve never worked in that field. I like to think this blog is the writer in me finally emerging!! Walking and writing have met and shaken hands and the creative juices are flowing once again in Walkin’, Writin’, Wit & Whimsy – hope you think so too.
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4 Responses to There’s “old-school” and then, there’s “THE old school” …

  1. Ann Marie stevens says:

    Miss Linda………………….thanks for sharing about your old but not favorite memories of your elementary school………………………….those 2 rocks were they mine you were talking about?

    • lindasschaub says:

      Hi Ann Marie – yes, sixth grade and junior high (now called middle school) were no fun at all, as I was bullied by not only teachers, but fellow classmates as well because I was an “outsider” (Canadian). I have been looking on the “Downriver Rocks!” Facebook site and there have been no posts about rocks found in Council Point Park. There are lots of postings showing pictures of people holding rocks regarding Bishop Park and Heritage Park – none for CPP though. You had your rocks placed there, and I have hidden four of Marge’s rocks there this week. And, I saw that white rock with the American flag on it which I wondered if it was yours? This morning while walking at Council Point Park, Marge’s rock, the turquoise rock with the dragonfly was still there, even though it was clearly visible from the pathway. People may be finding them and just keeping them for themselves.

  2. Marge Aubin says:

    It was chilly most of the day with the weatherman saying wait until Saturday when the temperature might hit 90. That’s Michigan weather. I am truly sorry to hear you were mistreated by a teacher.

    • lindasschaub says:

      Yes, it was not fun times for me in elementary and junior high schools to be truthful. I am hearing it will be very hot this weekend as well – I am content if it would have stayed like today which is really beautiful.

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