Five Photos, Five Stories Challenge Day Three: School Symbol

When I left California in 2003, I couldn’t have known that it would be a decade before I would return.

It was bittersweet to say the least, walking down memory lane two years ago with my dear friend, revisiting places where we had both once lived, parks and beaches where our children had played and picnicked together, and schools our children had attended so many years before.

Snapping this photo, I remembered my children’s first day at Pat Butler Elementary School. We had just moved to beautiful Paso Robles having escaped from a crazed neighbour’s violent threats, and a fresh, safe, albeit slightly nerve-wracking start awaited us.

As the years went by, this became our familiar spot where the kids waited for me after school.  “Meet you at the pole”, they would say when we said our goodbyes in the mornings.  And so we met, every afternoon.

Pat Butler Elementary School, Paso Robles, California, 2013 (c) Sherri Matthews

Pat Butler Elementary School, Paso Robles, California, 2013
(c) Sherri Matthews

The school entrance looked exactly as I remembered it.  Warm, Californian spring air stirred up shadows from the past: of me as a young mum, walking my boys to their first day of a brand new school, holding small, sweet hands, pushing my infant daughter in her stroller, knowing not a soul.

We were strangers in the land.

But in ten years of life and school within a community of friends, of PTA meetings, of field trips and parent evenings, of plays and awards assemblies, of D.A.R.E events, of Scholastic Book Fairs, sports and graduations, laughter and tears, class parties and endless cupcake baking, we found a home.

This photo is a symbol of that life, of that home.

Life moves on, my children are adults, their school days long gone.  Now it is the turn of  another generation of children and their parents, unknown to me and me to them.

I wondered if any of the same teachers still taught there.  I smiled as I remembered rushing down to read the list posted in the office window, desperate to find out who my children’s teachers would be for the new school year.   Another friend and I used to joke about the stomach aches we gave ourselves, so anxious that our kids got the ‘good teachers’.

All of that seemed so silly, standing there ten years later, once again a stranger.

They say it isn’t always a good idea to go back.  But I write memoir and so I have to go back, all the time.  But it isn’t to dredge up a painful past for the sake of it, nor to stoke into flames bitter embers of a life lost.   No.  I believe that sometimes we have to go back to remember because it helps us understand.  Then at last, in that understanding, we are able to tell our story.

And in telling the story, we know the ‘why’ for doing so: we have connection and we hold our heads high and we are strangers no more.

*******

Thanks again to lovely Irene and  Norah for inviting me to join in with the Five Photos, Five Stories challenge.  Today I’m inviting lovely, skilled friend Pauline of ‘The Contended Crafter’. No obligation Pauline, only if you want to and whenever you can.  And if any of you wants to know how to make a beautiful Light Catcher, I urge you to run not walk to her latest post.  Absolutely stunning.

This post is not the one I intended.  The story I had in mind was a very different one, but writing is a strange thing and so I went with the story that yelled the loudest.  It also links in with the Weekly Photo Challenge of ‘Symbol’.

 

About Sherri Matthews

Sherri has been writing full time since 2011. Currently working on her memoir, 'Stranger in a White Dress', she has been published in a variety of national magazines, websites and three anthologies. Sherri raised her three, now adult children, in California for twenty years and today, lives in England’s West Country with her hubby, Aspie youngest, two cats, a grumpy bunny and a family of Chinese Button Quails. She keeps out of mischief blogging, gardening, walking by the sea and snapping endless photographs. Her garden robin muse vists regularly.
This entry was posted in Family Memoirs, My California, Photo/Story Challenges, Weekly Photo Challenge and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

98 Responses to Five Photos, Five Stories Challenge Day Three: School Symbol

  1. “Meet you at the pole” ~ would be a great title for this touching post, Sherri. I remember your crazy, dangerous neighbor posts, and how you had to move. This shows your fresh start with the many adjustments, and how you made a wonderful new life.
    It’s a beautiful post, a triumph over travesty!

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    • Sherri says:

      Yes, I should have called it that Marylin! I don’t know why I felt led to use this photo for today’s challenge, but as soon as I saw it, those memories of meeting by the pole came flooding back. Thank you so much for your lovely comment…it is good to write of triumph isn’t it 🙂

      Like

  2. Heyjude says:

    A poignant post Sherri. And a lovely insight to your Californian life 🙂

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  3. Sue says:

    A very poignant post, and most heartwarming to see how you adjusted to your new life, and succeeded.

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  4. Tom Merriman says:

    I drive passed my old school most days, Sherri. It’s no longer a school, but the local water board offices, yet the building, the gates and the doors and windows are still the same. There used to be two halls, one above the other, the upper one was used for the drama lessons. I wonder if they’ve kept them as large rooms or divided them up into small offices. I also wonder if the old school smells still filter through… or a ghostly school bell sometimes sounds… blimey! Your school entrance brought all those thoughts flooding in!
    I think it’s good to go back and reminisce… and if you get to see things in person all the better.
    A very nice post, Sherri.

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    • Sherri says:

      That must be quite strange Tom, seeing your old school every day like that. Glad to bring back those memories…even if some old ghostly (or should I say ghastly, ha!) ones 😉 Nothing like an abandoned school building for some spooky happenings after dark! I have been in a reminiscent mood of late… Thank you so much Tom for your lovely comment.

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  5. I so enjoy reading your memories, Sherri. Yes, I’m sure we all stressed ourselves out as young parents, and quite needlessly so. I wonder though whether we would change anything if we could go back to those days? The cheery “meet you at the pole” made me smile. 🙂

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    • Sherri says:

      Oh I know, we look back now and wonder what on earth we worried about! That is a very interesting question and the answer is probably not! We would be just the same 🙂 Thank you Sylvia, I’m so glad you enjoy reading my stories 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Such a beautiful post Sherri. I too agree that understanding the past can help us discover who we are in the present. So often reflections of the past are bittersweet- reminding us of both the happy and sad. But then I guess that is life, right?! I love the story of meeting at the pole 🙂

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    • Sherri says:

      Ahh…I’m so glad you enjoyed this little story, thank you so much Heather. Life’s rich pattern, in all its glory. Funny isn’t it how an unassuming photo like this one evokes such strong memories? I had a long history with the kids at that school…and am so grateful for those years to look back on 🙂

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  7. Beautiful memories and ones I am living through at the moment. I related to this post Sherri as I wait anxiously to see if our new teacher is going to have a positive effect on my son and all his challenges. thank you for sharing, I bet it felt like it only happened yesterday. time is moving too fast.

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    • Sherri says:

      Thank you Kath, it did indeed feel like yesterday 🙂 I look at this photo and remember all the years the kids and I spent there, the familiarity of it and so many memories. Where do the years go indeed? I do so hope that your son’s new teacher is the best one for him and his needs to guide him through the next school year. I do remember that angst so very well!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Sherri had our meeting and he is pretty switched on, understanding that each child on the spectrum is so different. I was impressed with his optimism on how he can work with my son. Happy mum here. Many times I have driven away from school feeling at a loss for him.

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      • Sherri says:

        I’m so glad to hear this Kath, for both you and your son, sounds very promising. Phew, such relief! Thank you for letting me know. Have a lovely weekend 🙂

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  8. That is such a great story – especially the way you consider the retelling at the end. Seeing my name was a shock though! 🙂 My first thought was ‘Oh crap!’ but reflection makes me consider that a] it will be a good exercise and b] get me back into writing posts – maybe not on five consecutive days – but certainly more regularly than I have been doing. So, thank you for the vote of confidence and the ping back – and your very kind words! xoxo

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    • Sherri says:

      Thanks Pauline, glad you enjoyed it, but sorry for the shock! You made me laugh with your ‘Oh crap’ comment though 😀 I know that feeling, and certainly didn’t mean to put you on the spot, I find it so hard knowing who to choose for these kind of blog challenges but I had just read your lovely post and then got the idea that you might want to give this one a try. But please know, absolutely no obligation and only when you can. It was a long time ago when Irene first tagged me and I can’t do mine consecutively either…the main thing is if you do decide to join in, I hope you have lots of fun doing so and I can’t wait to read your stories. I’ve still got two to go myself 🙂 xoxo

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  9. Wonderful writing. Life is indeed a journey, and sometimes revisiting the past, when done for the purpose of understanding, produces fruit — as this did. Congratulations!

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  10. Luanne says:

    Beautiful. You made me feel nostalgic for the old days of when my kids were young and in school at Hillcrest and what our lives were like–in beautiful southern California. It is amazing where writing takes us!!!

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    • Sherri says:

      Ahh, thanks so much Luanne…and yes, it is amazing isn’t it? The story I was originally going to tell was humourous, but I started reminsicing and, well, that was that. May yet tell the other…and I’m glad this post brought back some nostalgic memories for you too 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Amy says:

    Thank you for sharing your story, Sherri! I so love the last paragraph, And in telling the story, we know the ‘why’ for doing so… Beautiful!

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  12. Sherri, I love your reason for visiting the past.
    A crazed neighbor? Oh wow, I’m so glad you got away!

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  13. Life and Other Turbulence says:

    Taking a bit of time this evening to swing on by and see how you’re doing! This post sure does resonate with me. Seems like the childhoods of my three children flew by in the blink of an eye, and whenever I reflect back on those years, it’s with a deep yearning to turn back the clock. I loved the children they were, and I love the adults they’ve become. I deeply miss their physical presence in my life on a daily (hourly) basis. But time marches on, no matter how we wish we could stop it if only for a little while. Sending you warm regards from my little corner of the world. xo

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    • Sherri says:

      So lovely to hear from you my friend from your little corner of the world 🙂 I have been wondering how you are doing and must come over to read. You may not know, but I’ve been away from blogging for some weeks thanks to endless laptop issues, now resolved thank goodness. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts with me, I miss that very same hourly (constant!) physical presence of my children too, relishing our visits with all gusto. But as you say, we will never have that time again as we did when they were young and at home with us in the nest. Oh I do miss those days so very much.
      Sending blessings and hugs your way and see you very soon! xo

      Like

  14. jennypellett says:

    Time flies by so quickly doesn’t it? And California must seem like a different world away now Sherri. How lovely though you had the chance to revisit and rekindle old happy memories. I love your meeting place and all the things you became involved in through your boys’ school doesn’t sound that much different from my own experience when Matthew was little – even though you and I were then some 6000 miles apart! I remember vividly collecting him from his first full day at infants school – his little face peeping round the door frame to make sure Mum was there, a look of relief when he saw that I was … Oh, those were the days, weren’t they?

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    • Sherri says:

      Oh Jenny, it certainly does. My life in California does seem like a dream away now, yet I spent such a huge part of my life there…and yes, it was good to revist, so very glad to have had the opportunity. Ahh, such a sweet memory of your Matthew! Those first days of school, when they looked for us at the end of them and couldn’t wait to tell us all about their day, and we as busy then as we are now, just in different ways 🙂 Those were the days my friend, I thought they’d never end… oh no, now you’ve got me all emotional and singing this all day I’m sure 😀

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  15. Norah says:

    Thanks for sharing the photo and story, Sherri. What a wonderful place to arrive at after your dreadful neighbour experiences. I loved reading about the school, the lifestyle and the friendships you made. But I what I especially like about your post is the reason you give for going back, for remembering – to understand- and in understanding to be strong enough to tell our stories. That is such a powerful confirmation of self, of purpose for existence. Thank you for sharing it. 🙂

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    • Sherri says:

      Thank you Norah, and yes, we lived in Paso Robles for ten years. It was our sanctuary and we had a good, happy family life there 🙂 My daughter went all the way to Fifth Grade at Pat Butler too, leaving when she was 10. She would have followed her brothers to middle school and then to high school, but we moved back to the UK. Our long association with this school brings back a wealth of memories. In fact, at one point, we lived only 5 minutes away across the road for 3 years! I love what you share about ‘confirmation of self, of purpose for existance.’ Thank you so much for that. Writing memoir has helped me find my personal path in life more than anything else, my ‘why’ and my understanding of that why. Charli’s post some time ago about the why of our reasons for writing triggered something profound in me and I want to write more about this in another post. I shared with her at the time my thoughts, but was not expecting to write what I did in this post! It just sort of happened, but that is the beauty of writing isn’t it? I love how it takes us along our journey in the most unexpected of ways. And the understanding we gain along the way 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Norah says:

        That’s so true, Sherri. Sometimes we don’t know what we think until we talk about it. Sometimes it takes writing about it. Both take a lot of courage, and lead us on journeys we don’t always expect and along new paths to explore and discover. I look forward to future posts on the topic.

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      • Sherri says:

        I just read something this morning about having the courage to follow the path we feel drawn to rather than sitting back in our safe comfort zones, afraid of change. Writing certainly pushes us into that new discovery even when at first, we didn’t think we were looking for something new, and then only to discover that actually, we still have so much to learn! Great chatting with you as always Norah 🙂

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  16. You know, I so agree, Sherri. Sometimes going back – whatever ‘back’ may be – is the only way for our hearts to find understanding. It can hurt, but doesn’t hurting only help us grow as a person?

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    • Sherri says:

      Absolutely dear Jenny Jen Jen…it is through the hurt and pain that we grow and mature..and able to show compassion to others because we understand 🙂

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  17. Gwen Stephens says:

    I absolutely loved reading this, Sherri. How little we think about the small moments in life when we’re wrapped up in doing them. It’s day-t0-day business, nothing special. Until we revisit those places and memories some years later, knowing we can never go back. “I believe that sometimes we have to go back to remember because it helps us understand.” How true that is. Thanks for sharing.

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    • Sherri says:

      Thank you so much Gwen for your lovely comment. It is very true, caught up in the hustle and bustle of life as it was then, but when we revist years later, knowing that things will never be the same again, our perspective totally changes. And we wonder why we didn’t understand in the way we do now 😉 Reflecting on the past in such a way, I find, is both beneficial and theraputic and helps us stand firm today.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. What a lovely memory you have shared with us Sherri. Delightful to read and very moving.

    Like you, I don’t mind looking back into the past. It can also bring back many happy memories, and I would always choose to go back, rather than forward, if offered a trip on a time machine. Photos always bring back so much to us and are a huge inspiration to me.

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    • Sherri says:

      Thank you so much Hugh, I’m thrilled you enjoyed the read so much. It’s wonderful isn’t it, how photographs bring back so many memories. I would be there with you in that time machine! I used to drive my kids a little crazy with all the photos I took when they were young, but now they are grateful. Lessons learned, posterity preserved 🙂

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      • Where would we be without photos, Sherri? They capture a moment in time that can never be lived again.

        BTW, are you coming to the Bloggers Bash in London on 1st Aug? I’m compiling a guest list and would love to add your name as a definite 🙂

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      • Sherri says:

        Indeed, so wonderful to have all those photos 🙂
        So sorry for not replying until today Hugh, I was out most of yesterday. But yes, I have jiggled things, so to speak, and can confirm that I will definitley be at the Bloggers Bash and I can’t wait!! So please do put my name on the list, thank you so much 🙂 And I just read Sacha’s post with the blog nominations, will be reblogging, but I’m staggered to see my blog there nominated twice. Had no idea. I feel really bad because I missed the cut off for the nominations as it was just about the time I came back to blogging. I saw Sacha’s post, liked it and then realised when I returned to nominate, I had missed the date 😦 So I’m even more humbled that ‘someone’ took the time to nominate me. Anyway, I’ve voted 🙂 So looking forward to meeting you and everyone 😀

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      • Fantastic to hear you’re coming to the Bloggers Bash, Sherri. I’m so much looking forward to meeting you.

        Don’t worry about not being able to nominate anyone for the awards. As I’m sure you will agree we have some great bloggers and their blogs on the voting list right now and I’m sure there will be another chance to nominate bloggers.

        As for who nominated you, you’ll be able to find out by checking the comments on Sacha’s post when she asked for nominations. 🙂

        See you on the 1st! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        • Sherri says:

          Ahh…I see and me too Hugh!! Well, you are so very kind and I am more than a little humbled, bless you and thank you so much!! Wow. I was amazed when I saw the list, so many wonderful bloggers…including you!!…up for votes!! Can’t wait for the bash 🙂

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  19. TanGental says:

    Ah yes ‘there is no period so remote as the recent past’. From Alan Bennett’s ‘The History Boys’. You are right that we need to go back for understanding but the nearer, the rawer that ‘back’ is the more difficult it is to access it. I think the ‘don’t go back’ aphorism applies to times where the same circumstances still pertain, where one still has a deep, visceral emotional connection. In Bennett’s play it was Irwin’s Jewishness and the consequences of WW2 that was still too raw. It seems, for you now, California is part of your history rather than part of your continuing present. Lovely thought provoking post.

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    • Sherri says:

      Thank you very much for your, in turn, thought-provoking comment Geoff. The History Boys is wonderful isn’t it? When that past is so raw, as with Irwin, ‘going back’ is another thing altogether. When, however, redemption and healing wash over and help close those gaping wounds over time, it is easier to return, albeit it bittersweet. To be honest, I wasn’t sure how I would find returning to my old home and vesiges of my old life in California after ten years absence, especially with my life so very different now. I wasn’t sure if I should do it, but in the end, I was very glad to have walked along those shadow-lined paths, even though it was quite emotional at times. But now I have good memories and a shared history for which there is no substitution.

      Liked by 1 person

  20. Oh Sherri, your post has transported me back to my elementary school days…yes, I can remember them despite approaching 50. 🙂 Every Friday, over the loud speaker, they played the National Anthem and the entire school marched outside to the flag pole to say the Pledge of Allegiance. It’s sad to think those days are gone in public school. Thank you so much for your encouraging emails the past couple of months. They’ve meant so much. xoxo

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    • Sherri says:

      Not so long ago then Jill 😉 Your memories of the National Anthem and the Pledge of Allegience reminds me so much those early days when my kids stood at the beginning of each day in their classrooms saying their pledges. I seem to remember my boys telling me at high school that they still did the Pledge at the flag pole, but how sad to hear that this doesn’t happen any longer. We’ve been gone from California for 12 years this August…how quickly things change…
      You are so welcome Jill, I’m glad they helped 🙂 xoxo

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  21. Dear friend,
    You wrote it all so poignantly, beautifully. It took me back to that time as well and now I see my girls with their boys and they have the same motherly concerns for just the right teacher! Where did the time go?!!! But those times you & yours were here are treasured memories that i carry with me always. xoxo ❤

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    • Sherri says:

      Where indeed my dear friend, and how poignant as you revist those very same concerns with your daughters and grandsons. Your treasured memories are as mine…held in my heart forever 🙂 ❤ xoxo

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  22. What a bittersweet, lovely post Sherri, I can feel the nostalgia and the love in your writing.

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  23. Loved this Sherri! It stirred up memories of my own. Thank you!

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  24. I loved the story and remember it well in my own life. Photos do trigger some wonderful memories.. The story I’m going to ask about is the one with the nightmare neighbors. Did you write that story somewhere I might have read it? It has a familiar ring to it. Thanks for the memories. 🙂

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    • Sherri says:

      I’m so glad you enjoyed this post, thank you 🙂 Such sweet days weren’t they, and even sweeter now that we forget the things we once stressed over! Only to make way for more stress, ha 😮 And yes Marlene, your memory is spot on! You did indeed read my post about my neighbour from hell, I just had a quick look and you commented on it, it was around the time we first ‘met’ here from the looks of it. Here is the link just in case, although I wouldn’t expect you to read it all over again! https://sherrimatthewsblog.com/2014/05/30/the-neighbor-who-stole-my-dreams/

      Liked by 1 person

      • That story was so vivid in my memory that the mere mention of it brought it all back. I’m glad to know something in my brain is still working. I was thinking this morning how we create unnecessary stress by our thinking. I’m practicing the art of not doing that. Cross your fingers. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  25. Your post shows how something which is nothing really can become a powerful symbol for you. I too enjoyed your reasons for writing memoir. I look forward to your further thoughts on this. I have spent many hours pondering this same question. One day we should discuss them, perhaps on a walk…. ❤ 🙂

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    • Sherri says:

      Oh Irene, I wish we could talk about this subject at length. So very much to ponder. You were the first memoir writer to find my blog (and how happy that made me and look how many walks we’ve taken since then!) and I so much enjoy our chats about the process as we peel off one layer after the other. Even in writing down my thoughts here helps a little in clarifying what writing memoir really means and why we feel compelled, as memorists, to do so. Definitely time for another walk my friend…get your boots on, I’m heading over… 🙂 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  26. restlessjo says:

    Sounds like a good conversation coming up between you and Irene. 🙂 Isn’t it funny how a post does sometimes elbow it’s way to the fore? It’s created a lovely little snapshot of those days for you, Sherri, and for a lot of us too. I still occasionally walk past the school gates and memory drags me back. Where are those other kids now and what doing? Some of them we manage to keep an eye on. Others just vanish! Same with friends 😦

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sherri says:

      Yes, it never fails to amaze me how that happens. I didn’t plan this post as such, had another photo and another story, but when I came across this photo, I kept thinking about ‘meet me at the pole’ and that was that. Irene and I do like to talk about our memoir writing 🙂 It is sad how some people we were once so close to simply vanish like that. There was a time when I would have walked into that school and most everyone would have known my name, teachers and parents. Today I would be only a shadow, as they would to me. Oh the memories…nice to be making new ones though – friends and memories! Have a lovely weekend Jo 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  27. cardamone5 says:

    Beautiful, Sherri

    Liked by 1 person

  28. jeanne229 says:

    Brought my own sort of “reverse mirror” memories Sherri. After living in California for 8 years I went to Japan to teach “for a year” and ended up moving to London four years later. My daughter was just three months old. A year and a half later my son was born at the Whittington Hospital in Highgate. So my earliest memories of being a mom were of meeting up with other “mums” and buying “beakers” and “nappies” and feeding ducks at Waterlow Park. Indeed, those days seem like a sweet dream now. Oh, and I LOVE Paso Robles and that whole Central Coast part of California. Driving up from LA to San Francisco next week. Will wave to the area for you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sherri says:

      Wow Jeanne, we seem to have crossed paths in more ways than one, how fascinating! Although I have never been to Japan (but desperate to visit with my daughter and we plan on it, God willin’ and the creek don’t rise, ha!). As with you and nappies, I had my ‘diaper bag’ and stroller instead of pushchair. A sweet dream indeed *sigh*. I have driven that route between LA and San Francisco so many times. The grandparents lived in LA, and when we lived in Los Osos, we did the scenic Pacific Coast Highway route, sometimes stopping at Solvang and Santa Barbara. When we moved to Paso Robles we usually took the Grapevine, Hwy 5, not as pretty, but quicker. A friend of mine from England had a Canadian husband. They moved to Vancouver a few years after we moved to CA. For years, I said that she lived ‘just up the 101’. They visited us every year on their way down across to the Fountain of Youth in Arizona and back to us on their way home. I haven’t seen her since I moved back here. And now I had better stop as I am making myself thoroughly homesick for CA and those days of long ago 😉 Have a wonderful trip Jeanne, and I hope Paso Robles waves back to you from me with a smile. Thank you for sharing a part of your life with me in your deligthful comment.

      Like

      • jeanne229 says:

        So fun to hear more of your memories Sherri. Yes, California is such a crazy congested land but so amazingly beautiful…. such a unique spirit. The Pacific Coast Highway always calls to the heart. Oh, and more on Japan later. I am a hopeless Japanophile….

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      • Sherri says:

        Crazy indeed…mixed with a wild beauty and that indefinable ‘je ne sais quoi’ that won’t let go. And I look forward very much to more about Japan 🙂 Hope you’re having a wonderful time on your road trip!

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  29. Pingback: The Elephant in the Room | charactersfromthekitchen

  30. Marie Keates says:

    My days of standing in the playground waiting for my boys seem idyllic now I look back at them. They went to the same schools I did so there were memories of my own childhood too and amazement that everything seemed so much smaller.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sherri says:

      Oh for those happy times 🙂 Thanks for sharing your memories too Marie. Yes, I thought how much smaller everything seemed when I revisted my kids’ school. All three of mine went to this one, so many memories…

      Like

  31. Ste J says:

    I love a walk down memory lane, it brings back good memories going back to a place but they are tinged with sadness as well. The missing of people, alien feel to a place now people you knew have left, it is a good idea to go back sometimes I think, just to remind yourself to treasure the good moments and not take people for granted. Thank you for this post, it resonates a lot.

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    • Sherri says:

      I’m glad this resonated with you Ste, thank you. Yes, it is good to remember the good moments, even though I know it’s easier to look back with those proverbial ‘rose tinted spectacles’, which tend to filter out the difficulties and stresses of the day, but I think that’s a good thing, as it helps us get things into better perspective for our today and the way we live our lives now. Not to mention relishing those good times and the good people we know and have known.

      Like

      • Ste J says:

        It also helps with blogging, I miss some of the previous times when people blogged more or hadn’t deleted their blogs but then again I am happy to be in the here and now with so many awesome people to talk to and wander the world of thought and imagination with.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Sherri says:

          Yes, it is so sad when bloggers disappear. And I meant to say, I noticed when I came over to your blog, I was no longer following it. I was mortified as I don’t know why that happened. Have now re-followed, so wanted you to know that just in case you were wondering what happened! This has happened with a few others and my blog too. A real nuisance. Still, we are here now as you say, with a wonderful community and that is what counts. Have a great weekend my friend 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

          • Ste J says:

            It’s happened to me a few times as well, I put it down to clicking the like button at the top next to the follow button but maybe it is just a glitchy thing. It does make me appreciate each moment we all have together, which is how it should be. I hope you aren’t travelling this weekend but having a great time nonetheless.

            Liked by 1 person

            • Sherri says:

              Yes, I think that might be one problem. Not much travelling but we did go to a wedding, a couple who were old school friends of my middle boy. He was best man and did a great job with his speech, no notes or anything! Made sure to end with a quote from two great philosphers – Bill &Ted 🙂 Hope you had a super weekend my friend, whatever you did!

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              • Ste J says:

                Be excellent to each other! Fantastic films they are, I need to watch them again when I get out of my current horror phase. My weekend consisted of work and writing, I feel like I haven’t properly read for months now.

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      • Sherri says:

        That was it, exactly! I thought he was going to get all lyrical on us when he said about two great philosphers…lol! Oh I hope you get time to read soon…and catch up with some Bill & Ted. And have a break. Those were such great films…

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  32. “I believe that sometimes we have to go back to remember because it helps us understand. Then at last, in that understanding, we are able to tell our story.” I so agree Sherri. I too like to go back to places that reminds me of not just about the good times but more to remind me of what is really important in life. It helps me reconnect, perhaps even move on. I believe nostalgia touches something in us so we can be fully appreciate our blessings as well as guide us on the future we hope to have. Going back to California this Summer, but I’m praying I will get a job there…It’s a scary move as we have to start all over again…but a big part of me, and my wife agrees, needed to start again…God bless you and your family.

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    • Sherri says:

      Hello dear friend, how lovely to hear from you! I have been out of the loop for a long time with laptop issues, so I apologise if I have missed some of your posts. I will get over to you to catch up shortly. Going back does indeed help us reconnect, roots us and reminds us of our firm foundation and of all that is most imporant in life. This in turn helps us live our today with more gratitude and then, as you say, face the future with renewed hope and confidence. And wow, a move to California for you! I pray you find the right job at the right time. A new start and how I relate to that, as you well know. My heart is filled with excitement for you and your beautiful family. God bless you in all you do, and I look forward to hearing your news as it unfolds 🙂

      Like

  33. Pingback: # 2: Walter, Walter everywhere… | charactersfromthekitchen

  34. So good to see you again, Sherri. Plus a post about a place I know so well can only move me a lot. I’m sorry for having missed your return. Just glad your computer is cooperating again. Looking forward to more beautiful photos and words. Also I have been asked to participate to the 5 photos 5 stories. I am tempted!!!! See you soon, Sherri.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sherri says:

      Hi Evelyne, how lovely to see you again! Thank you so much for your lovely welcome and kind comment. I am still catching up and it is slow progress as I am having to personalize my new computer (and thank you, the issue is now resolved and I have a different laptop) and download various programmes which of course all takes time as I go. Still, it’s great to be back up and running again and I do look forward very much to catching up with you over at your pad asap 🙂 Meanwhile, I hope you are enjoying a wonderful summer. See you soon indeed Evelyne!

      Liked by 1 person

  35. Pingback: #3: The Gasman Cometh | charactersfromthekitchen

  36. Just yesterday my husband and I took a walk around our alma mater. He was one year ahead of me and we began dating during this time. We really enjoyed seeing our dorms, classroom buildings and hangouts. I am all about going back to reflect and learn as well as to savor the great memories. Some memories are painful of course, but it’s a healing process.

    I know what you mean about stressing out regarding getting the right teachers, the right classroom and making sure friends were placed together. It does all seem silly right now. 🙂

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    • Sherri says:

      How wonderful for you and your husband to take that walk Maria, oh what great memories for you both! And yes, it was serious business back in the day wasn’t it, yet now we look back and think how everything worked out in the end, at least for the most part 😉

      Like

  37. Pingback: #4: Off With Their Heads! | charactersfromthekitchen

  38. Pingback: birth |100 Emotions (a sketching challenge) | Ramisa the Authoress

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