Letters to the Editor 5/20/2003
Enjoyed her 'Busman's holiday'
I was asked recently to chaperone the Andalusia High School Band trip to a marching competition in Orlando, Florida.
I must confess that I was not thrilled about the invite.
An eight hour, all night bus trip with 120-something teens did not sound like my idea of a break from teaching fifth grade at Andalusia Elementary School!
I was needed, however, so I relented.
It was an eye-opening experience.
The students were absolutely awesome.
Their attitudes, their cooperation, their work ethic, were a joy to behold.
We loaded the buses in a cats-and-dogs, lightning and thunder monsoon at 9:30 at night. It went so smoothly, each person tending to his appointed task, you’d have thought it was a spring picnic.
We drove all night.
You just can’t sleep on a bus.
It’s a fact.
We arrived in Orlando at 8 a.m.
The next three days were full of theme parks, competitions, awards ceremonies (at which our kids took top honors, I might add), and a lot of loading, unloading, and waiting for buses (you will note that the word sleep does not appear in this itinerary).
I was amazed.
Each student was at his appointed place every time. Period.
They did exactly what was asked of them, except when they stretched to help out more. They were pleasant, even without sleep.
They endured bus trauma. One bus died as soon as we arrived, which was what I wanted to do! Another had a flat tire, requiring a two hour wait in the south Florida heat; and one decided to retract it’s air conditioning abilities as we boarded it for the stuffy ride home.
Partly out of their loyalty to Band Director Tommy Grimes, but mostly because they are just good kids, these students were a joy to be around and a delight to chaperone. I would go again! - er, maybe not next week, though.
Thank you AHS Band for letting me join your ranks for a while.
It was a pleasure and an honor.
Outsiders don't seem to be welcome
I moved to Andalusia 27 years ago and into the city proper for the last 13. I live alone. I'm a 70-year-old, lonely man. The paper has articles about the need we have to care for the younger generation, and we do, but nothing about the older generation's needs, and they are manifold to those most in need, but I'm writing about those organizations already set up.
We have an old-boy set-up which caters to a select few and ignores the remainder older population who face nothing but sure death for their immediate future. The trouble is that the rules for admission are not written down but are strictly enforced nevertheless.
Am I being naive to suppose that certain qualifications are necessary before an older individual is allowed entrance to many? Other than age, none of these are important, none have any place in being considered at all, yet we allow them to flourish.
Questions for new people:
1. Where do you live, and for how long?
2. Where are you from originally?
3. Why do you sound that way when you talk?
4. What is the color of your skin?
5. How do you feel about the results of the Civil War?
6. Where do you go to worship God?
7. What is your marital status?
Unless an individual answers some or all of these questions in the right way, their attempt at improving life by joining a particular organization or club will go for naught. Disprove me if you dare to, but I doubt if you can. We're too happy with the way things are to consider changes for now. It seems as though an outsider will remain just that. Maybe a club made up solely of us rejects is one answer.