A Former Classmate:

One of my classmates was a girl who had also been in my class during 3rd and 4th grade. She was extremely shy and kept to herself every bit as much as did I, and so we had never spoken before. One day as we left an assembly and headed toward the playground for recess, she called to me. I was surprised to hear my name on her quiet voice, so I walked over to where she leaned against a low block wall. Her wild, curly hair was cut much shorter than it had been a few short years before, and she wore glasses now. I thought the look suited her quite well. She said “I sit over here during recess, because no one else comes around this side of the building.” I told her I thought that was a good idea, and she offered for me to join her. She extended her bag of crackers to share with me, but I declined on account of my blood sugar concerns. I don’t recall what we talked about, but I remember thinking that it was one of the most enjoyable conversations I had ever had. She was much more graceful and caring than I had expected from the nervous outcast. In fact, almost immediately I regretted that I had never befriended her before. Conversation flowed easily between us, and I thought about how much more pleasant it had always been for me to talk to girls such as Cousin-L, S2 and K1, to say nothing of my friendship with R1. We made plans to spend recess together around that side of the assembly hall again, but this proved to be the only time we would ever speak.