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"I Am Poem" by Lana Avalos

October 15, 2017

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Three decades… and we meet again.

August 15, 2017

 

I read his full name twice and the rain of memories began. Smiles, one after another, make you go to those places…

 

Two students from each classroom were very lucky to see extraordinary places out of the city at Ciudad Valles, S.L.P., Mexico. The Elementary School I attended was spectacular. The academic trips that they organized every year to La Huasteca were magical. Thanks to them I learned about

cultural treasures such as the Archaeological Areas of Tamtoc or the Castle of Xilitla, to name a few.

At the beginning we started taking classes in a little room loaned by the city at two or three blocks from where our school would be built. The photograph of that little room remains intact in my memory (that’s a story for another day). I don’t remember how long we took classes there before we could move to the new building. What I do remember is that one morning I stood scared and paralyzed at the closed door of that little room. –I had forgotten that we had the day off.

We used to walk twenty minutes to get to the Elementary School "Nuevos Horizontes". The Lázaro Cárdenas suburb streets were made over really high peaks. It wasn't an easy walk or at least our seven year old feet didn't feel like it was. During the rainy days we had to clean our shoes every two blocks if we wanted to keep moving. Because the streets were not paved, the mud road all the way to the school was inevitable. Despite that, it was great, it was truly great since the teachers were waiting for us at the gate of the school to greet us by hand every day.

The artistic and cultural education they offered us was extraordinary. Surely we all have had excellent teachers in our first years of school, but I think that somehow the team who raised that Elementary School from scratch had an extra motivation that made them offer something more; those teachers had an amazing vocation to their careers.

As they expanded the facilities, they also began to organize clubs. I chose the Drawing Club, where I was very surprised when my first draft (a drawing of a lion) received eloquent praise from the teacher. Then, somehow I ended up being part of the Chess Club, just before a tournament took place. –I was eliminated in the first round.

In the same court where that tournament took place, I was crowned Princess of the Spring in third grade. Right there, I carried the Mexican Flag in the civic events of the next three years. And, in the same platform I played “The Dice" of the song El Juego de Parchis (A popular singing group in Spain), dancing in the first feature of the School's Artistic Festival. In fifth grade I also gain the wonderful experience of attending a three-day Summer Camp on the grounds of the 5th Regiment's facilities. That was an outstanding experience. Despite not knowing any of the other fifty children, I had an incredible time.

To finish the rain of memories, I must say that I especially treasure the greeting and always warm smile of our Director, Professor Jorge Alberto Perez Ramiro. I am sure that without his guidance and leadership my precious memories of Elementary School would not be the same. Three decades ago we met with the birth of the “Nuevos Horizontes” Elementary School. I remember our director was so fascinating he even had a daughter named Joy.

Yesterday we met again and as I read his full name out loud, the parade of memories began. Memories can truly carry you back in time. Today I have the most sincere desire that wherever he is, he keeps having that light that sets him apart. May a shower of blessings follow him through life.

 

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