Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Teaching is giving

A short story from Grandpa Tom, who taught band for many years in a couple of different high schools in northern Utah and far southeastern Idaho, told in his voice if not his exact words. (My dad and brother have worked to record many of Grandpa's stories on video, but I just had my leaky old brain with me this weekend, no fancy equipment.)

Mostly on band trips things went pretty well. I don't think we ever had a boy and girl get together, that I knew of. Just the worry about it. Sometimes the boys did a little drinking. But usually there was not much trouble.

One time I took a group of kids to Disneyland. A girl came up to me and said, "Mr. N-----, so-and-so needs you." I asked her what for. She said, "She's taken a bottle of perfume and they won't release her until somebody pays a $300 fine in cash."

Well, cash! I never carried cash. But for some reason this time I had put a thousand dollars in my wallet. So I went and paid the fine. Oh, was she glad to see me.

Here I said, "I sure hope her parents paid you back." Grandpa quickly replied.

Oh, they couldn't have. Her dad had been in an accident and was paralyzed from the neck down. He tried to do some substitute teaching, and the kids were good to him, but it was never enough. They couldn't have paid that fine. But I think she learned something.

No comments: