The sophomore's rafting trip happened today. I went last year, but even without asking I knew what they did.
They got on the yellow school bus and watched as the neighborhood went by while I was counting significant figures in Chemistry.
I then had an ethics test. They were passing the houses of the robber barons on Georgetown Pike. During a math class of running full mind to understand synthetic division of polynominals, they pumped up rafts.
During the free period, they ate pitas and some had been convinced that this could be their last meal.
After putting "The things they carried" back in my bag for a while and pulling out "MacBeth" for English class, they lugged the rafts over their heads down the steep ravine to the water, and then were briefed on safety and designated captains on how to steer a ship
During second lunch period, munching on mystery meet, they learned to trust their classmates and build bonds as they navigateddown the river and treated each other with dignity, for rowers have to row in the same direction to go somewhere.
While translating in an embattled manner "Le Medecin Malgre Lui" for French Class, they fought currents and weighted lifejackets as they swam upstream, the best swimmers not doing a good job on distance.
While building chords in music theory, they broke bonds with the normal force of the earth as they all (or most of them) jumped off a cliff
While arguing that the war in Iraq was not one for oil, they slipped their wet outergarments into a plastic bag and put on polyester fleeces and polymer-lasced t-shirts and slippers and sped back to school
During orchestra, they pulled out mp3 players for the last part of the journey.
During the soccer game, they were there, and acknowledged, yeah, I'm tired.
Some things don't change year to year.