In about one hour from now I'll pack my children into the car to cart them off to their first day of the new school year. Of course it brings back a whole boatload of strong memories.
I wonder if any of my friends from that era, or my brother Mike, would recall the little briefcases our mothers bought us at Sears. They were made of imitation leather and had metal clasps. I think mine was brown. There were metal runners on them like four stationary wheels, which made them really fun to slide down the street on our way to and from the bus stop. We used to have competitions to see who could slide their book-bag the farthest.
I remember wearing crisp shirts, also from Sears, along with jeans whose denim was dark blue and stiff in its newness.
There was the nervous quiet in the classroom on that first day, as we met our new teacher, hoping they would be nice, that they would be patient, understanding and tolerant of our shortcomings.
As I prepare to rouse my family from their sleep this morning, I find that I am wishing the very same things for my boys as I wished for myself back in 1971.