Sunday, June 8, 2008

Empty Parking Lots, the Last Teacher Standing & a Rebel Yell

“I stood on my heart supports thinkin’
‘Oh my God, I’ll probably have to carry this whole load.’
I couldn’t remember if I tried
I couldn’t remember if I took my brain out, threw it so directly at the goal
I couldn’t remember if I...
I could have my mind erased
And still not know exactly what I don’t already know…”
--“Florida” by Modest Mouse


On Friday, as I climbed into my fab-u-lous Nissan Z Roadster. OK, OK, OK, so it’s not anything close to a roadster or sporty…well, OK, it’s my trusty mini-van… I know, I know, I know, it’s all pathetically rather soccer mom-ish from back in the day when my kiddos played, you know, soccer… but, again, I digress… let’s start this whole shebang again… (don’t ya just love the word “shebang”?)…rewinding… here we go…

On Friday, as I climbed into my trusty mini-van and surveyed the parking lot, I noticed that I was the last one leaving on the last teacher work day of the 2007-2008 school year.

I should have realized I would be the last teacher standing.

The signs were everywhere. Perhaps the darkened hallways should have tipped me off. Or, when I zipped speedy quick down those hallways and into the teacher mailroom and had to feel my way to find the light switch so I could find the other switch to turn the copier back on because I still had contest entries to mail--perhaps that should have been the tip off…Or maybe it should have been the fact that I could belt out Aretha Franklin at the top of my lungs and nary a soul was here, there or anywhere to witness or wince.

Now before you start thinking I’m Ms. Slacker Extraordinare, know that I did manage to get all the official stuff done–grades turned in, books scanned, computers turned off, furniture inventoried, purchased orders filled out and so forth and so on--you know all those things that make your head explode. All done shortly after 12:30 p.m. Not bad.

But sadly, my friends, while others were screeching out of the parking lot screaming “free at last! Free at last! Schools out for summer!” at the top of their lungs, I still had all that other stuff to do…like get things ready for the summer journalism workshop (yes, I’m spending five fun-filled days and four stress-filled nights with 30 or so publications staffers in July), and of course, there were those pesky journalism contest entries that had to be readied in order to meet the pending mid-June deadline…

It was shortly after 5 p.m. before I could proclaim that I was as close to done as I would ever be. So after making sure the rubber chicken had been packed with all the important workshop stuff, I gave a defiant glare at my still unorganized desk, locked the door and loaded up my van.

My reward for surviving yet another year? Why my annual trek to the beach where I will be incommunicado--no email checking, no answering phones, no text messaging, no blogging, no posting, no nothing. Nadda. Zilch. Zip. No siree, it’s just me, my family, a stack of good books, some chips and salsa, and all the gulf shrimp I can eat.

So-o-o-o with a rebel yell, I screeched out of the parking lot able to chalk up one more year in the success column because, after all, I made it without once setting my hair on fire.

It doesn’t get much better than that.

8 comments:

Melissa B. said...

I've got 5 more days with cherubs, then 2 work days. Starting on the contest entries manana. Enjoy the beach! :) I'm JEALOUS.

Mister Teacher said...

Yeah, I feel your pain. I too was one of the last teachers out of my school last Thursday. Of course, a great part of that was due to the fact that, as grade chair, I had to help and wait for one of my team members to very slowly finish her paperwork...

Anonymous said...

Well i'm not at the beach but I am almost as happy. Thought you might like to know my new job is o-so-fab-u-lous and the drive up is much more enjoyable in my brand new car :0... i know

your favorite former editor... and if thats not true i dont want to know

Clix said...

*hugs* Take care a yerself!

Anonymous said...

My classroom caught on fire this year when my fish tank heater caught the cabinets on fire during Holiday Break. It never set any fire detectors off. I walked in for homeroom to see my classroom completely destroyed.

What does that mean?

Father Ronaldus said...

Congratulations, o Flame-Retardant One! Once again, that's "retardANT."

Anonymous said...

You can be sure I will keep up with your adventures here despite not being there with you all. You all have no idea how very much I will miss being there.

That last work day, I left at 3:00, but I had to come back on Monday because everyone who needed to sign had left before I did! Now, I have been back twice moving stuff out since then and will still have to make at least one more trip. Just one more time - I hate moving.
KG

mybellringers said...

So sorry...well not really since I was at the beach and all…for the delay in posting everyone's comments… but I had a fab-u-lous time and am so-o-o-o glad to be out for the summer… now, about setting the classroom on fire, I'm not sure what that means… hmmmmmm…