Maybe after being thrown back fifteen years by my computer, romanticism swept me off my feet and I found myself exploring a notebook full of records of my past. A note of a vaccine when I was two years old, but it’s in my mom’s writing, so that’s why this small piece of paper has been kept for 54 years. Yes, I’m a pack-rat, especially when it comes to memories.
How many people, for example have the program to their high school graduation exercises?
If they had a category for the person who was most likely forgotten, it would have been me. Even though I attended public schools from the start with Mrs. Parker’s Nursery School. I used to remember the street. Conant is coming to mind, but the only thing I really remember was how twisty and narrow it was; there was a small bridge right before the Nursery school on the left. I wonder if the creek or small body of water, that ran under the bridge had a name?
When I shook Principal Garland’s hand, he said “Thank God you are the last Honthumb.” His handshake was meaningful and his teasing showed he really meant the opposite. I can’t speak for my sisters, but it’s not like I lit the board up in my fourteen years in the school system. We were a quite family that lived on the end of a dead-end road. My dad parents worked hard to give my sisters and I a solid childhood in the suburbs of Boston. I was a good athlete, but I played the wrong sports. Soccer was just coming on. Weston didn’t even have a girls hockey team; I went to the town next door, Waltham.
I fought against everything society was throwing at me in terms of what girls were supposed to be like and learned to hide like a turtle. I crawled deeper into my shell after my mom died. As long as I had a dog, I was set; that’s all I needed.
It’s not like I ever was an extrovert. Is there a gene for shyness? My dad fought through his shyness by being in sales. I did the same thing. I was always going door to door selling something or asking for donations. For the most part, I kept to my self. I played goalie in soccer and spent more time with Keifer the Jack Russell Terrier than my teammates.
I wonder how many of my classmates remember me? How many of them do I remember? Many names are familiar, but I faces are blurry or non-existent. I wonder how many are my Facebook friends or how many either have left no footprint or their names are so common, I can’t find them. The good part, or perhaps the bad part of having a very uncommon name, is my sisters and nieces are easily found. I will say that every time I look on the internet for Honthumb, something new pops up. My sister and her daughter are all about the first two rounds of Google searches. Real estate does have a way of getting a name out.
Today I came across a book I’ve not seen before. Lena Honthumb is mentioned of always being with the family.:
Hold Dear, as Always: Jette, a German Immigrant Life in Letters
By Adolf E. Schroeder, Carla Schulz-Geisberg
Maybe next blog I’ll continue the path of looking up classmates…