Le!ndary Moments: A Walk Ar#nd Lillian Osborne School January 2014 Sto%es by Students and StaďŹ€
The Dichotomy of Heat There is a stairwell on the south east side of the school that is like a sauna. I slip through the doors, amazed to come in from the parking lot, shivering and wooden, to that welcoming warmth. Heavenly heat, soak into me and make me feel again! As I climb numbly up to the second floor, I breathe a sigh of thanks to whomever is responsible for this blessed moment. ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~* But when I am all bundled up to go, toque pulled down, scarf wrapped around, mitten clad to brace against the inevitable icy blast, that same stairwell's heat is oppressive and, dare I say, hellish. I lug my books up higher on my shoulder, and trudge down, resisting the urge to tear off my winter gear. I push open the outside door, and breathe a sigh of relief that is quickly snatched by the cold wind in a refreshing whoosh. -Mrs.Marlowe
My classmates and I were granted fifteen minutes of freedom to do what we wished. For at least a short time, we were freed from the shackle that is school. And so here we stood. All that separated us from the â€œgreatâ€? outdoors was this one door of chilled glass and frigid metal. As I stared out into the cold wasteland through the frosted glass window, I placed my hand on the crash-bar, and with a melancholic sigh, I shoved. As soon as the door creaked open, a gust of icy cold wind shot through the minute crevice and slashed at the exposed skin of my hands. Immediately, the bitter cold bore through my raw flesh and began to gnaw at my bones. At this moment, I realized that this forced pilgrimage I was to embark upon would only be accomplished through my sheer will. Pushing the door ajar with great force, I extended one leg and placed my foot on the other side of the portal. As I pressed my heel into the ground, and put my weight onto my leading foot, I heard the sickening crunch of snow being compressed between myself and the deathly cold pavement. It had seemed as if I had entered an entirely different world from the one which I had just departed; one world of warmth and comfort and the other a desolate and barren wasteland. The temperature drop was nearly unbearable, and as I moved further from the confines of the school, a cutting north wind lashed viciously at my body, negating the feeling of warmth which my meager hoody provided. I pondered why I had forgone my coat in such extreme conditions, and in the movement of only a few steps, my body went from slightly warm to feeling as if my the bitter cold was forcing its way into my very soul. This cold in tandem with the treacherous footing made by thin glazes sheets of ice made even walking a struggle. Under ordinary conditions, or even on a cool day, the Recreation Centre only feels like a short walk from the school- out one door, and into another. This day, however, it seemed as if the Recreation Centre had shuffled a kilometer further away just to make the walk to it feel like an eternity. Despite this, I was dedicated to accomplish my goal of finally reaching the dry oasis. It was a quarter of the way to the building that I realized all those things people say about Canadians becoming resistant to cold over time were absolutely false. Cold is cold, and on this particular day even the most hardy could not boast warmth in such a wretched environment. With the hopes of at least lessening the impact of the weather, I tugged my hood over my head. Though it provided little solace from the cold, it did prevent the wind from snapping at my ears. My colleagues and I trudged onwards, until we neared the door. The warmth from the buildingâ€™s interior could already be felt a few metres away, or perhaps it was our relief of arriving at our destination. Heat rushed over me, rewarming my extremities and granting myself the feeling of bliss and satisfaction. Finally, we had arrived! Our happiness was short lived, as we were due back in class in only a few minutes. As I glanced at my phone, I saw that only five minutes remained of the fifteen minutes of freedom which we had been granted, and I sighed once more already regretting the things to come. Five minutes was approximately the time it would take to return to class, and we had only one choice: to brave the cold that we had come to despise once more. With many groans and complaints, we once again embarked on the long trek back to whence we had come. -Tyler Lotzgeselle
Through Thin Glassby: Chelysa Janmohamed The transition from the solid walls to the white flurry of crystals was abrupt as I approached the staircase window. It was odd to look out at the blizzard while feeling the incredible warmth of the radiators heat emanating from the ceiling. There actually wasnâ€™t too much of a color change from the walls of Osborne to the snowy outdoors; both were a monochromatic scheme of greys and whites, flushing out all color from the scene. The main difference was that outside was substantially brighter; at first glance my eyes stung as they adjusted to the intense light. I sat on the hard even step, looking out at the wonderful chaos from framed windows. That image was currently my situation. All I can do is look through a refined glass at the real world and all its problems, as I sit protected and warm in a sturdy safe building. Lillian Osborne is a wonderful shelter, but that itself has positive and negative repercussions. There are very strict rules defining a great deal of somewhat unnatural, and at times uncomfortable, structure to the individualâ€™s lives behind the glass. Although when we step through the doors and go outside into the blizzard we are still bound by rules, there is a great deal more freedom, and this very fact adds to the apparent chaos. I think high school prepares us for the structured parts of our future, not the chaotic parts. Once we are permanently shut out to the opposite side of the glass, there is so much permitted freedom itâ€™s overwhelming.
We step outside into this treacherous snow storm with no map except the one we ourselves have no choice but to create. There’s so much uncertainty, so much ice to slip on and fall. The worst part is that the ice is hidden. From the top of the stairs behind the window, I can see the patches of ice spread out on the ground. When you walk outside, the ice is seemingly covered by powdery snow that mockingly assures you the grip of your shoes will hold you another step. I’ve experienced this one too many times and of course, this is clearly not the case, realized moments later when I fly through the air only to be caught by the hard ground. The snow then melts into my skin, sending me jumping up to my feet only to fall again on another patch of ice. From up here, the hurtful ice looks angelic, shining in the few sun rays that made it through the heavy clouds draping the sky. I bent my head slightly and adjusted my weight, trying to reach a somewhat comfortable position on the cemented stairs. I turned my head from the raging white to the boring walls of Osborne, protecting us from feeling any of the heavy wind pushing against the glass; instead actually showering me with now unbearable heat. I stretched out my legs and winced slightly assomething popped, which usually happens after holding your legs in a ninety degree angle for so long. It was very still and quiet. Nothing moved. There was no sound. Looking back to the window, it’s like watching an action scene which someone has turned on mute; there should bescreaming wind and the crunch of snow. But as the snow flies past the window, blurring the screen, it’s dead silent. Not only do the walls shelter me from the wind and the cold, it also blocks out sound so I at least have a choice to hear my own thoughts. I can choose to either see the blizzard, or I can turn my head and be blissfully ignorant to the reality of outside. After some movement, I snapped back into my place as a student and noted the time. “We should head back to class.” I nudged Kristyn who was sitting on the step in front of me, probably lost in her own conversation with her thoughts.
Thinking of the Future, Remembering the Past Taking a seat in the staircase and looking across the parking lot all I can think about is how far away the future seems. It holds new experiences like university and all the travelling around the world that I, one day, plan to do. The future which will be colourful, busy, loud and full of excitement is a large step away from the still, white outside and the grey walls of Lillian Osborne, my school of three years. I will be graduating this coming spring, but it feels like an eternity away as this winter shows no signs of ever ending. The snow covers everything, the cars, the roads, the fields and the trees in a soft white blanket that hides all the colour that was showing during the summer. The sky has taken on a similar hue of white, making it blend in with the ground and all is still. Well, all except for a single bus that is departing from the bus terminal taking along not a soul with it, because it is the middle of the day. I wish that the bus would take me with it and away from this dull day with all the snow and colours that blended together to form a palette of grey, white and beige. I know that the wish is in vain because I canâ€™t leave now or for the next few hours due to the fact that I still have half of English left and two more classes after lunch. For now, I can still imagine what will come even in this year. My eighteenth birthday, graduation and hopefully a bright and cheerful summer. I see all of this waiting for me in the near and distant future. As I sit in this staircase with the glass being the only barrier between the cold outside and my warm refuge, I also think about the past three years here. My first day when the school seemed so big and I felt like I would never be able to find my way around the school. The classes seemed much larger and the content of the courses seemed much more difficult. I also remembered the first school dance that I went to with my friends. There was loud music, all the current hits and many songs that I have never heard and havenâ€™t heard since, and many bright lights that were a rainbow of colours. The first year seemed to speed by, like I blinked and missed it. Grade 11 came quicker than I ever could of imagined. It brought with it many new experiences and friends. Science class was now three separate classes, Biology, Chemistry and the big, scary science also known as Physics. Everyone was terrified of Physics because we had all heard the stories. The class was hard, the teacher hated everyone and the stuff that we learned was about as dull as the day that was outside with the grey sky and white ground. I went into my first day and expected all of the stories to be true. I have never been so wrong. Like all of my other teachers, my physics teacher was amazing and it quickly became the favourite of all of my classes. Grade 11 was over quicker than Grade 10 and the summer went by even quicker. Grade 12 started, but I still had a hard time accepting that I only one year left of high school and that I would be graduating in the spring. The spring that is now only a few months away. This is the last thought that I have as I stand up and start walking to finish this walk around Lillian Osborne High School. -Kristyn Dribnenki
"Without Colour" This buildings essence is grey. Grey as I walk these hallways, grey floor to ceiling, grey clanging in the lockers. Every turn I make I see this shade, a shade so monotonous that it doesnâ€™t reflect the school that I chose. Each step echoes the lifeless reality that you live in and the desolate halls emphasize the smallness of this school. The abstract concrete meshes together in a confusing yet boring way, leading to a conformed image that disappears instantly from your brain. Peering upwards the same color is present. You do not see the bright sky, or the everlasting sun beaming down with great intensity. You see the sharp angles combined with the ever so dim and artificial lights hanging without vigour and you sometimes wish that the windows that lay beside could somehow show you a natural light. But no, only during the early mornings when the sun just begins to rise do we see the light that shines this tiresome grey, enlightening the life and spirit within this building. And as you walk up the concrete stairs, each thud, each resonating step you take tires and wears you. Just like the routine that is repeated every day of waking up, going to class, and aimlessly wandering the halls. Finally arriving at the top of the grand staircase you observe your surroundings. The idle loneliness that resides, the empty roominess apparent in every path making you want to stare at the floor. And you continuously walk, letting your mind wander to daydream about something else, avoiding the looks that surround you. The Grey couches, grey columns, grey walls, everything seems grey. And as you observe, you realize that this is really the reality and essence of your school: a grey school. -Nathan Nguyen
How can it be that a once quiet hallway can become a bustling flurry of excitement with the simple sound of a bell. It’s the sound of the bell which signals the end and the start of a block of tedious learning. This bell is a switch to the school that dictates the student body from a quite uniform entity of knowledge to a socializing powerhouse. I stroll calmly into the school fully aware of the time. The time for classes to begin slowly creeps closer as the music that signals the coming of the bell plays on. The students left outside in the hallways who are either latecomers that whiz by desperately trying to get to class or students lazy waltz on by not caring to add another tardy to their attendance record. I having a spare in the morning idle at my locker not knowing how to spend the spare. After careful thinking I decide to take a stroll. I walk the hallways of Lillian Osborne. It’s the beginning of the first block and time for my spare. With no notice or warning we are made to stand for our regular routine of paying our respects for our nation's anthem. But there’s always that moment where we stand expecting the regular anthem, but then we are shocked to hear a french or strang accented version of our anthem. So we listen to the anthem with faces that look perplexed, trying not to burst out in hysterical laughter or mostly not caring. This doesn’t last too long though as the anthem soon fades off and life quickly returns to normal. At times the hallways in the school becomes deathly silent. These long corridors can become like a ghost town where it’s so silent that any sound cuts through it like a knife through butter. There’s rarely a person in sight as I walk around this small school. I wander the empty hallways to explore an already familiar school. While minding the not to raise my voice to such a volume that the doors around me begin to slam shut in impatient frustration. Then there’s the aroma of delectable food that slowly wafts all around the school. That sweet savoury smell that causes uncontrollable salvation and starts the rumbling of the my growling stomach. The empty feeling in my stomach only grows stronger as I reach the front of the door. I take a deep breath and wistfully thing of the freshly cooked food that I will never have the pleasure of tasting. Then I continue on my journey down the hallway quickly whisking the thought of food out of my mind. I soon grow tired of walking in an endless circle and stand at the crossroads of where to continue my journey. to go to the Rec or to go to the library that is the question. Looking out at the bitter cold of the outside world my mind is quickly set on staying the the warmth of the school and decide to walk into the comfort the student lounge that we call the library. I walk in to that enjoyable scent of books and then I lay down on the many chairs in our library. Slowly sliding into a state of drowsiness I then close my eyes to rid myself of that sluggish feeling of waking much too early in the morning. But then I wake up with that guilty feeling of not have doing anything productive during my free time. So I soon fall into conflict with myself should I start to work or should I accept my innate nature and continue to laze around not really doing anything. Should I do the right thing or should I do the easy thing. After some careful thought I decided that I guess I should at least do a bit of work. I then walk out and make my way to my locker thats when the bell rings and the once quiet halls fill with the laughter and joy of reuniting friends here that explain the events of their just recent class. As if the bell held a magical spell the piercing sound breaths back life into the lifeless hallways that just a moment ago seemed dead. As the halls become alive I slowly wither on the inside as I realize that i had just wasted a perfect opportunity in my life to improve myself academically. But I guess it’s not so bad to take a break once in a while to see some sights and to smell the roses. Two steps forward and one step back. You might know the hallways that you walk by everyday but you might not truly understand the insignificant details that it holds. -Ryan Luu
Maria Migorska Hard to Admit As I slowly go down the stairs I happen to look through the window and see that is snowing again. My mumbling about the conditions and coldness, possibly became quite loud, when I notice that one of the students is looking at me sceptically. I decide to ignore her as I am heading away from the hellish warmth that is always present in this particular staircase. While I choose to walk a bit slower than usual, I have a chance to peak in to the classrooms. I see the newest members of Lillian Osborne as well as I notice some that I see every day and never even said "Hi" to neither. Then, I go through the Fine Arts doors, where the lights came to be shut off and I can barely see what is laying under my feet. Then I become entirely blind for couple of moments, while a bright light reaches my eyes. Obviously, the AGA or the photography class is working on their projects. Also, I come to hear the teacher announcing that there should be no food in the lab and I notice that several kids began either putting it away or keeping it close by so when an occasion comes they can still sneak some through. Though, I almost reach the art class, the smell of cut wood draws my attention to the Construction room. I always wanted to take that class but there was always some other subject that I was expected to take instead… Despite all the distractions, I finally enter the art room where a sudden scent of lilies hits me and I feel right at home. I can hear the quiet and calming music and notice a group of students working on their projects and portfolios. This specific room is so familiar and so welcoming that it happens to be my favourite at Lillian Osborne. The walls are covered in various art which is either a sketch or a painting or a combination of two or more. The shelves and the side tables consists of almost everything you can imagine; of course art supplies but also books, creepy dolls, toys, flowers, and many, many more. That is where I find inspiration and help, not only in art but also, in all other subjects. This is the place where I discover opportunities and find encouragement to keep going. Where I see the results of hard work and ambition towards experiencing and acknowledging the beauty around us. Once I decide to finish up with my art, I clean my table and head out. Again, I am passing through the lab and I spot two students playing some kind of a game which becomes silenced as I leave the Fine Arts area. The hallways are empty, as only the custodian is cleaning one of the classes. I say ‘hi’ to him, he smiles back at me and continues his work. It is already dark outside (and probably even colder than before). I reach my locker and successfully achieve in getting my coat out of my messy locker. I dress up warmly and walk toward the exit. As I leave, I look back once more and consider the day as a good one, indeed. Considering that I am in grade twelve and I am five months away from leaving this school, I am not ashamed to admit that that I will miss it no matter what. Maybe, the majority of the school does not know my name nor did I ever spoke to any of them, but I had a chance to learn new things, create memories and amazing friends, and all because I attended Lillian Osborne High school.
The light peeks through the glass windows as I walk by. Step by step, I hear the cold air roar, and I imagine the winter chill brush against my skin. Thinking, how glad I am to be inside at the moment. I have the shelter of the school to keep me warm and away from the bizarre weather mother nature has given us today. As my shadow slowly fade past the windows, I find myself on the edge of the staircase, ready to take a step. Slowly, the loud thumping of my heavy footsteps follow me down the stairs. As I make the last leap to the main floor, my surroundingbecomes silent. I stare around me, just concrete. Only a few students were to be seen. The sight of this was strange to me, but then it came to me that the students were in class at this time.Thinking how foolish I was, a scent whiffs by. The scent was the smell of fresh baked goods, I was sure. Knowing what the scent was, I also knew where it was coming from, the foods room. I walk down the hall hoping to reach this scent and seeing what goodies the students have made this time. As I make my way to the foods room, my footsteps become quiet as not to disturb the classes around me. Passing by the open doors of each room, I catch a glimpse of students staring back. I quickly look ahead of me and hurried down the hall. At last I have reached the location, and I listen as my stomach growls for some food. The door in front of me is shut tightly as I decide on going in or not. My stomach growls aloud once again, so my hands began forming a fist as I am prepared to knock. Just inches away from contacting the door, hesitation took over. I knew that there was a class inside, but the power of curiosity urges me to find out what lies behind the door. Perhaps they are baking cupcakes? Cookies? Perhaps bread? The sound of my stomach is just dying to know. As I was unable to get pass the door, I found the blinds covering only half the window.There it was, my opportunity to look through the glass and fulfill my curiosity. Standing in front of the window casually, I tried not to make it seem suspicious as I slowly crouch down. Holding my balance, I press my face against the glass to see the other side. Placed neatly on the counter, I saw cookies stacked on each other. The sight of perfectly golden baked cookies made my mouth water. At this moment, I felt a slap behind me. I turned around to see my friends standing there. I greeted them and asked them how their walk around the school was going. They told me that they weren't getting inspired and that they felt like going outside for some thoughts. I agreed with them, and they grabbed me out the door as I turned back to see the last of the cookies.Pushing past the doors, cold air quickly surrounds us. I wrap my arms around myself as my goose bumps made their appearance.
Looking up at the sky, light snow descend onto the ground. I make my way slowly past the snow covered pavement towards my friends. One step after another, my boots imprints onto the snow. Staring beneath all the snow, sheets of ice are revealed. As I look up, my friends werealready gliding across the pavement. Their faces lit with excitement, so I too, joined them in thefun. My boots skid across the ice and wind rushed passed my hair. At that very moment, I actually enjoyed the chill of winter. While having so much fun sliding across the ice, we almost lost track of time. It was when my friends realized the time, that we quickly rushed back into the school. The coldness fades as we make our way pass the doors, tapping off the snow on our shoes while we enter.Staring at the clock, it was time to return to class. Walking down the hall and up the staircase we went. In no time, we entered the classroom and sat at our own desk. Cheeks still red from the outdoors, we stared at each other and smiled. I grabbed my pen and stared down at the blankpiece of paper. Instantly, my ideas flowed across the page. The events that occurred while walking around the school was the inspiration to my writing. These were the most memorable,and I bet my friends and I both agree. The more I kept writing, the more I became lost in my own thoughts. Most of all, the walk around the school was a good ease to the mind. Tiffany Banh
Richard Park Winter Winds Snowâ€”white and powderyâ€”fell as I began my journey to quench my trust with a cup of coffee. Jacket-less, I walked along the curved path through the bitter harsh winter winds. The wind running up and along my body, nipping at my arms and face, I huddled to conserve my heat. Hands in my pockets and my head bent down, I shielded as much as my body as I could. With the frosty winds at my back, I glanced up and saw my destination only a few strides away. The doors slid open, and I was greeted with a blast of air from above. But through the second set, a rush of warm refreshing air welcomed my indoors. After conquering the cold unforgiving wilderness, I decided it would be appropriate for a cup of coffee. Coffee in one hand and the other in my pocket, I walked through the pair of sliding doors to once again reunite with the harsh winter. Unlike the first time, I was prepared to confront this demonic weather; like a furnace, the coffee provided warmth and energy to my once frozen body. So out I went being greeted by a rush of frigid cold air. Proving to be worth its price, my coffee ignited a flame deep within my body creating a sensation of warmth. The winds seemed to become nonexistent and the sun shinned a bit brighter. Entering the school with the aid of a button, I realized it lacked the entreating warmth that I once needed. But my coffee was still warm to the touch.
The Journey for a Cup of Coffee By Austin Maier The first day back and even Mother Earth looks like she’s having a bad Monday. All I can think of is a cup of coffee. A gloomy day like this it’s going to take a miracle even to make it to Second Cup. As I near the front door I can see just how awful the day really is. Just before I walk out I pause, because I already know its freezing out there, and I don’t have a jacket on. I make a quick decision to not run back to my locker, but to make a quick dash to the rec centre. I make this decision, because I would rather be extremely cold for a few minutes than wait a second a longer for a coffee. As soon as I get through the door I know I made the wrong decision, yet I’m not going to turn back now! The first thing I notice, besides the cold which hit me right in the face the second I got out the door, is the fact that I’m not the only one who needs a coffee desperately. I can understand why so many people would want a coffee, but, on the other hand, I was determined to be the first one to have a coffee. Even though I wasn’t in the lead, thanks to my crazy speed walking skills, I managed to cut everyone off, and ended being the first one through the door. The change in temperature is definitely the first thing that anyone would notice especially on a cold day like this. In that split second between the outside, and the front door of the rec you could almost feel the heat. I always feel weird during these moments as if I can’t tell if it’s hot or cold. I walk towards Second Cup and, to my absolute joy, there isn’t a line. That was by far my greatest fear before I walked through that door. I walk into Second Cup and order a Hazelnut Latte, one of my most favorite drinks. After a few minutes the coffee is finally mine, and with a sense of accomplishment I take my first sip. The first sip to me is always the best one especially after having to walk there in the cold. With the drink I wanted so desperately in hand, I start to walk back. This time my coffee feels like a little heater or fire in my hand, and my walk back doesn't feel as bad as the one there. I wish this was the end to my journey, but, like so many other times when I get back, I somehow manage to let someone else talk me into going back. I don’t know why I agreed to go back, but it happened. This time I didn’t get another coffee or anything else for that matter, but I got a nice conversation, and a good laugh out of it. To me alone that makes it worth it. Not surprisingly I was more than a little late back to class, but in exchange I got a good memory out of it. Seems like a fair trade.
The Fall Jacqueline Tonn Just another cold December day, I was wandering through the snow making my way to school. I felt my phone buzz in my pocket and took it out to see what it was. The first thing I noticed was the time. 8:50. I had five minutes to be in class with another ten minutes of walking still ahead of me. I burst into a sprint. I decided to take a short cut through the snow covered field. As I got further into the field, the snow became deeper. As though in motion, I could feel my foot get caught on a chunk of ice, which sent me somersaulting head first into the snow. I got up, brushed myself off and carefully continued trudging through the field, accepting the fact that I was definitely going to be late for class.
Walk Around Lillian Narrative: Same Old School, Whole New World The halls of Lillian Osborne are now quite the familiar sight, almost like a second home. Having been a student at Lillian for almost three years has made me remember almost every corner and hallway of the school. Though that still doesn’t mean that there wouldn’t any surprises. The goal of the walk was to experience the school not just through what you see, but with other senses aswell. Winter in particular brought in a whole new set of both positive and negative sensations. Of course one of the most noticeable would be the cold. Canada had always had a reputation for being a cold, snowy country, and the day of the walk was no exception. It was snowing, not too heavily but when combined with the temperature, it was enough to deter me from going outside. I was tempted to at a point, but after being met with a sharp gust of cold air to the face right after opening the door, it was enough to change my mind. My jacket was foolishly left in my locker so any sort of outdoor expedition would be an unwise decision. Even after my brief exposure to the harsh outdoors it left my nose and ears a little red. I quickly retreated back to the warmth of the school, my breath leaving behind a puff of frost at the door. Nice fresh winter air is usually a welcome and refreshing part of my day, but not without the proper clothing. Being underdressed a few too many times in Edmonton winter has made me wary of its ways and its cold bite. Going back through the foyer I wandered the halls and up the middle staircase with nothing too noticeable until I reached the side stairway. What hit me first was the smell. It reminded me of a combination of a sweaty locker room and some rancid restroom. I’m not sure if it was the result of dozens of wet shoes and boots leaving a soaked and smelly carpet, some strange substance being stored under the stairs, an unfortunate accident happening in the stairways or a combination of all those factors but I did not plan on sticking around to find out. Fortunately the foods room was at the base of the stairs, and like always, a strong pungent smell met my nose. I don’t recall exactly what aroma it was that time, but I just remember that it was a welcome relief. Strangely when I returned later in the day, the smell had mostly dissipated. All in all the walk around the school was an interesting experience. Usually the halls are alwaysso full and bustling that I don’t have the time to stop and take in the settings. The walk make me do just that, and though I was met with mostly negative results it was still a unique trip. -Lucas Law
I looked up and was immediately greeted by the sight of two colossal windows flanking the front entrance of the school.A cool breeze combed its way through my hair ruffling it in the process and eventually earning a dissatisfied grunt from me.So much for attempting to tame my crazy curls... Taking a languished breath, I let loose a puff of steam and stood there mesmerized while the wisps dissolved it selves into nothingness. It was the beginning of September, which meant winter was just around the corner and also the beginning of a new school year. Gripping the woolly scarf around my neck and clutching the school map with my left hand I proceeded towards the entrance with steady determined steps. It seemed like yesterday I was in grade 10 without a care in the world and plenty of time at my disposal, and now graduation was approaching at an ominous pace. With a bit of effort I managed to push my way through the heavy doors and scan my surroundings. Gym to the left, a spacious library in front of me and an elegant arrangement of comfy looking red sofas to the right. The windows and high ceiling both contributed to that open and airy feel that I have grown to love today.You see, the previous school I inhabited seriously lacked in the window department and me being a nature lover, frequent visits outdoors -during breaks - were inevitable. The sun’s rays washed over the hallway giving it almost a glossy glow,and making my way towards the seating area I pleasured myself in its warm embrace.Taking a seat facing the gym I gingerly unfolding the crumpled piece of paper on my lap to help me get a sense of my bearings. Satisfied, I folded the paper back into my jacket pocket and texted my friend about my whereabouts. Wait there by the library entrance, i'll be there in ten mins. And I did. It was getting fairly crowded now, with groups of kids chatting excitedly to each other about their summer adventures and travels. I took the liberty of searching for familiar faces since I knew a few of my junior high friends that go here. I did earn a few looks from passersby but as I smiled apologetically they smiled back and resumed with their previous tasks. As ridiculous as it sounds that small gesture helped me gain a sense of equanimity and I felt a bit more at home. Suddenly, a fiery lock of red hair caught my attention forcing myself away from my search and replacing my irrational doubts with a soothing rush of relief and happiness.With a cup of coffee in hand my friend made her way through those doors with a searching gaze. “Marysia!” Reacting with a sharp turn at the sound of her name,she saw me flailing my hands about trying to get her attention ,and laughed. After pushing our way through the now crowded hallway we greeted each other with a hug and made our way to my locker, blending into the crowd. -Navodhi Ranatunga
School Walk Around By Alexa Tonn Briskly walked through the front doors of the school, and I sauntered through the foyer making a head for my locker. I brushed by few in the hallways making my way for the staircase. I slowly lift my self to the second floor and saunter through a second wave of people. I glance at friends, and fellow classmates giving a nod or a wave with a smile. My pace steadies as I reach my destination. The lock turns like a clock in motion and I wait for the click of relief. My locker creaks as I swing the door open with my hand. I lift my rock filled backpack onto the silver hook in my locker, and strain off my coat onto the hook second on the other side. I talk to friends around and shared stories and laughs. The first bell rings and I grab for my belongings and begin to head to class. I brush past the other schoolmates making a headline for their classes. I find my seat and set down possessions, I begin to takeout my writing utensils as the second bell begins to ring and I embark on a long day of work.
M.O. Old School, New Light Peering through the window of the classroom, the snowflakes seemed like they were endlessly beating against the frosted glass. As we slowly made our way out of the classroom, I was surprised how quiet and secluded the slightly curved hallways of Lillian Osborne seemed without the hustle of several hundred teenagers squeezing by as rapidly as possible in between classes. The atmosphere was really something different, with people quietly working behind the desks sprawled out underneath the grand staircase as well as near the back window unlike the loud drone of voices heard and masses of people crowding together when the classrooms are empty. Passing by the lockers made me realize that even though everyone who attends this school is unique and different, we all get caught up in the ambiguity of everyday life that it pushes our individuality farther away. Making my way down the concrete stairs, my feet almost start to ache at how hard and flat each step was. The large mosaic on the wall of who the school itself was named after seemed like the only thing standing out in a sea of concrete, wood, and glass. Maybe in a different environment it would come off as almost dull, but against the very boring concrete wall the portrait of Lillian Osborne popped with color and vibrancy.
Slowly making my way past the bathrooms I was greeted by a very unpleasant smell slowly seeping through the door less rooms. Walking past the gym I could here repetitive thumps and squeaks of basketball and athletic footwear, almost like a beat. This really contrasts the people who were relaxing and chatting in the front foyer. The laidback chairs overlooking the recreational center and front of the school of the foyer really seem like a perfect place to slow down and take in the day’s events, something that everyone who sits there likes to do. The front windows of the school didn’t seem like windows at all, more like an gateway to the freezing hell outside that separated it from the inside of the school. Just like the windows of the classroom, these had what seemed like endless amounts of snow beating against them. But this was on a much grander scale, and it almost seems surreal that there’s maybe a couple centimeters of glass separating the warmth of the building and the freezing cold outside. I glanced outside to see a couple people from our class making their way as quickly as possible across the road to get to the recreational center. During the summertime this is maybe a half minute journey but in the freezing cold weather of Edmonton in January it feels like the recreation center is infinitely far away to be worth it to go there. Sure you might be able to piece together enough change for a coffee at Second Cup but even though for those couple of minutes it warms you up, you still come back to the school shaking with a red face and hands. After a few minutes of gazing through the window, I moved on back to the classroom but instead of making my way by the gym, I went through the hallway near the end of the school. This hallway is notoriously known to be not wide enough to accommodate the mass amounts of students that pass through it every day, and getting through it is always a struggle between classes. But being completely empty it drew upon me a much more relaxed feeling, and without so many people packed between the walls it seemed much bigger than it actually was. As I went up the stairs and past the classrooms, I made my way back to where I started. Now however I realized that if I was really attentive to the details, I could see the school that seems so boring every day to come to in a new light.
Let Go By: Kim Shiri The autumn chill ran up my spine as the electric feel of the cold weather infused itself into my body. The narrow and lonely path led to the vortex of nothingness, otherwise known as school. It wasnâ€™t that I didnâ€™t like school; it was just that everything had become so obscured and overwhelming. I was juggling school, social life and work. I was staying up late, waking up late, I lost my appetite and the tsunami of stress was crashing over my life, leaving a trail of destruction. I remember being in math class, I was sitting, trying my best to stay wide-awake, staring up at the ceiling. I felt as if my head was about to explode, like a few electrons shy of going inert. The panic ran over my body out of the blue. I had the urge to jump, run and find an escape. I ran out of class running faster than I ever knew I could run. I ran in hopes of finding a hairbreadth escape. I passed pedestrians, trees, and the next thing I knew I was sitting inside a forest as empty as I. I looked up and saw the sun gradually sequester itself behind the moon. I screamed. I let all my feelings out, and for one second I felt free and all the suppressed feelings slowly drained themselves from my body. By the time I reached back to the school, it was lunchtime. I slithered my way in unnoticed. I continued on with my regular routine feeling much more relieved. I still couldnâ€™t tell if I actually ran to a forest or if I daydreamed it, but the one thing I know is I surpassed the ghastly presence of stress that had taken over my life. Whether it be in a dream or in reality, I learned to let go.
Nicole Nieberding When you open the first set heavy gym doors the first thing you notice is the sound. Bouncing rubber balls along with the verbal accompaniment of physical exertion. Colourful skipping ropes whizzing throught the air as they complete their circuits while disgruntled or elated facial expression accosts your vision. It's at the second pair of doors where the stong smell of sweat and desire hits you like a wall and you are hit almost as hard with the desire to join in. Someone scores, people cheer, the whistle is blown. Class is over, but the adrenaline will last. At least for a little while.
The walk to the rec center on a cold day is a trip that all students at Lillian are all too familiar with. The decision of whether or not to throw on a jacket or to even venture outside at all. It was a particularly cold and blizzardy day when I decided to make the trip. I had thought a warm coffee on this cold day would make things that much better so I began my journey. My journey began as I walked down the grand staircase towards the doors that shut out the misery outside. I considered turning back to grab a jacket but came to the conclusion that I had gone too far to turn around, so I proceeded forward towards the inevitable cold. Reaching the front doors I reflected once more upon my decision to not wear a jacket but again concluded that it was unnecessary and stepped through the doors. As per usual, the first few seconds weren't that bad; that is, until the cold wind cut through my thin layers of clothing and straight to the bone. Now regretting not wearing a jacket I trudged onward through the cold towards the warmth that was held inside the rec center. As I proceeded forward, the cold came and went and, as time went on, the periods between the cold shortened until there was not moments of warmth anymore, only the cold. Luckily, by this time I was near the entrance to the rec and this knowledge gave me strength to proceed until I had finally reached the doors that lead to warmth. As I walked through the doors warm air rushed around me and pain shot through my body from the sudden temperature change. Slowly I began to warm as I walked towards Second Cup and, by the time I was in line, there was nothing left of the cold except a bad memory. I ordered my warm drink and waited as the prepared it all the while knowing that as soon as I had the warm drink I would have to again venture back into the cold. When the time came that my drink was ready I grabbed the warm cup and began walking back towards the doors that again led to the bitter cold. Once at the doors I took a moment to drink in hopes that the warm liquid would provide a little bit of extra warmth for my journey ahead. As I stepped outside the same sensation occurred as earlier, a few seconds of warmth then cold. I told myself the walk would be better this time due to the warm drink I was carrying but that was only partially true. The drink does indeed provide extra warmth but it comes at the cost of your fingers. In order to hold your warm drink you must expose your fingers to the elements so as the coffee provides warmth to the rest of your body your fingers turn to icicles. As I journeyed back towards the school the warm of the coffee gave way to the cold as my exposed fingers froze. The wind began to blow towards me making the cold so much worse. I thought of taking a sip as it might warm me a little, but I couldn't bring the cup to my mouth; it was just too cold. Quickening my pace I moved closer and closer back towards the school where I knew I would not have to venture back into this cold miserable weather and yet the closer I came, the colder I got. This made the small distance I had left to travel seem like an eternity. As i stepped through the doors of Lillian Osborne, a wave of relief rushed through my body as the knowledge that I was safe from that brutal cold settled in. I allowed myself a few moments of silent victory before I returned to class, mission completed and returned, coffee in hand, relatively unscathed. Once I returned to class, I sat there, warm once again, reflecting upon my journey and whether or not the coffee I had so desperately craved before was really worth the journey through the cold. -Michael Begg
Katelyn Drake Just before opening that door, I know the noise will hit me, like the books I never cracked open during the glorious Christmas break. The shrills of the teenage girls who haven't seen their girlfriends over the break lingered through the hallway. The boys propped against the blank white walls of Lillian Osborne. The smell of bitterness wafted through the hallways as students places all of their thick hard books back into their lockers. The teachers in deep sighs, stressing about marking all of the assignments given before the break.
Paying Attention to the Day Kasra Shayeganpour Iâ€™ve never realized what a wonderful experience it is to pay attention to the little things I ignore on a daily basis. Just yesterday, I was walking around my school, and I noticed the damp fog on the cold windows, which made definite flower patterns and ironically reminded me of spring. As I made my way towards the front entrance from the English classroom, I paid close attention to the diminutive shoe smudges on the floor, a sign that many people had passed this way and left their mark. I made my way outside the school and across the freshly shoveled snow path towards the recreation center. A blast of warm air greeted me as I came inside, and a warm breeze radiated down my spine. I notice the faces of others as they relaxed, and their expressions seemed suddenly happier, less lined and stressed. The smiles of the individuals inside of the recreation center reminded me of the struggles that every individual has been through, but has always been able to hide.
I quickly made my way to Second Cup, and ordered a double-double coffee with cream. The waitress served me with a pleasant smile, and I thanked her for her service. The coffee was hot and creamy, and reminded me of the Milky Way. I made my way out to the front entrance, and back towards the school. What a beautiful sensation it is to walk outside into the cold weather with a cup of hot coffee in your frozen hands, and have a warm jacket, toque, and sweatpants to protect your body. The comfortable feeling only lasted until I got back into the school. Then I could feel the cracks in my dry hands broadening, and blood slowly making its way from my capillaries to my fingers. The sudden sensations made me wonder about both the physical and mental pain that soldiers feel daily. It not only brought down my mood, but also motivated me to work harder in my school subjects to later support individuals in need. I approached the red couches, took a seat with one hand on my coffee and the other in my pocket, feeling more than cozy. I raised my left hand, grabbed my rough tuque, hastily took it off and laid it across my lap. While slowly sipping my hot coffee, I spotted one of my friends walking down the halls. I called him down to come chill, and we casually start talking, like we always do. We told each other new stories, and plans we had for the weekend. As time went by, I made my way to my locker, walking with some of my friends I saw in the halls, and talking about news. I opened my jagged locker,unhesitatingly turning the lock without knowing the exact combo, and then hanging up my jacket on the hook. I knew it was time to head back to English class, so I grabbed my books and materials and took off.
An Assignment Turned Special J.P. When our teacher first requested us to take a stroll around the school, I could not help but feel reluctant to do such task. As I stepped out of my classroom, a sharp pain erupted within my right heel. The badminton prior to my English class did not aid in my assignment to take things into perspective. Limping down the hallways, the labor gradually began to be more and more regretful. Reaching the “horseshoe” of our school, I glanced through a large window and realized the harsh climate that I lived in. If I can live through that for all my life I was sure I can live through this assignment. Time passed and I eventually made my way to the designated area; in front of the school. I took a look around and it did not surprise me that I noticed nothing special at all. As I sat on the chairs in the library, I began to notice little things occurring around me. Things like people gossiping, people playing chess, and even my teacher herself sitting behind the librarian desks. I realized to myself, that if I notice these small things, perhaps I have the motivation and confidence to fully express my opinion in my writing. Perhaps… this assignment was not as bad as my friends thought it was. I smiled to myself and I glance over to my teacher who was looking at me back as if she knew that I was wrong about the assignment. As the time drew near for me to head back, the pain in my heel seemingly subsided. It was at that moment I fully realized the purpose of the assignment; to give us better practice for our upcoming diplomas. With that in mind I was very grateful that our teacher dedicated her time in teaching us something meaningful and helpful. As I got up, I realized in alarm that I was fifteen minutes late and I rushed back to class, eager to know what’s next.
Time Passes in these Halls When I walk these halls, I think it will bring me the anxiousness of graduating and all the roles and responsibilities I must fulfil in the upcoming days. I imagine myself walking these halls for the last time before going out in the real world. However, while walking these halls it fills me with nothing but relaxation and contentment. The smiling faces of friends I haven’t seen in a while, sharing with me stories of their adventures. I walk from friend to friend, realizing how different they all are from each other, nevertheless loving each and everyone. I walk into the gym and get jumped by one of my friends, she wraps one of her arms around my neck and ruffles my hair. I swirm trying to get out of her grip but shes too strong, the teachers and everyone around just laugh. She eventually lets me go, but of course in the back of my mind I remember to return the favor next time I see her. I have already thought of an enticing situation; next time I see her in the halls, her back will be to me and she will be casually walking not expecting anything. I’ll lean low and weave through a crowd of grade tens because they always stand in the middle of the halls in a clump, I’ll wind my arm back and “SMACK”, the sound will echo through the halls, I will walk away with a smile stretching across my face. The smile is already stretching across my face just thinking about my mischievous plot. I’ll have to be extra cautions in the halls after; keep my head on a swivel, for she’ll be looking to get me back. I feel like a cub whenever I’m with her, violent but, it' true that all’s fair in love and war. I look through the window into the phys-ed office and get a peek of Mr. Harle at his desk. My hands are on the window along with my face pushed into the window, waiting for a sign of acknowledgement. He looks up and raises his eyebrows but gives me a faint smile. I enter the phys-ed room and tell him how excited I am to have him next semester for psychology. This brings a smile to his face and remarks with “Oh, I have you in my class next year? I should transfer out while I can then.” “I’ll teach if you transfer out, I know a thing or two about psychology”, I snark. Out of the gym I go skipping with my eyes darting in all directions searching for a friend to initiate a conversation with. I strain my mind to think where I can find some of my other friends and the library is the first place that comes to mind and sight. However, before I make it to the library doors, my friend comes running from the other side of the hall and ushers me back to class. I didn’t even realize how much time had flown by while just taking to some of my friends. Time seems to fly by so slowly, but looking back it has gone by so fast. -S.S
A Walk Around Lillian Osborne There once was a boy that was a typical student of Lillian Osborne. He would do the same repetitive task of waking up, walking and attending school, and then walking back home. Life was rather monotonous and unsatisfying. He would often contemplate as to why he lives the way he does and why the world functions this way. He questioned nearly everything and sought motivation but was disappointed in his efforts, eventually becoming emotionally stoic and this overwhelming sense of melancholia would enshroud his vision of the world. After given the task of walking around the school by his English teacher, he would once again question himself with the perpetual loop of whys. He began recalling nostalgic memories of his junior high life and although he did not appreciate the memories initially, he learned to eventually cherish them and be grateful for the time he had spent with his friends. He longed for those memories and events to come back to him and realized that as you age, you begin to realize how beautiful yet cruel this life is and that growing up will only cause more suffering. The saying “Ignorance is bliss” had a nice ring to him and he realized that it was indeed true that he was much happier as a naive and ignorant young boy than a young yet mature, soon to be adult. He was distraught over the future and despised how society would determine one’s worth simply by standardized exams. This reminded him of one of Einstein's famous saying that “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” We are all unique and very talented in distinct areas yet the government’s only concern would be for the future generation to be a mob of mindless tax paying drones that are shackled by student loans. Of course, he knew that blaming the government was only a childish and asinine intuition to scapegoat another for one's troubles. He wanted society to reform into this perfect utopian civilization that would acknowledge everyone's talents and by acknowledging everyone’s strengths, we would be able to find a way to counteract their weaknesses, or at the very least, compensate for them. Then the question as to what intelligence truly is struck him. Would a surgeon that smokes 2 packs of cigarettes a day be considered intelligent? What about an autistic savant with mathematical skills that would easily compete with a calculator yet have a minimal sense of social interaction? Who decides whether an individual is intelligent or not? Of course, people who accomplish things such as invent or discover new idea’s or products that benefit society are obviously worthy of praise but he thought to himself, shouldn’t there be more to life than pleasing others? When an infant is born, they are already signed into a forced contract of filial piety; obligated to acknowledge and heed the decisions and wishes of their parents. This boy completely resented the idea of having to owe a debt that he could never repay. How could a child repay his parents for years of raising them let alone, repay the debt of a prophet and supposed son of God named Jesus who died for his sins two thousand years before he could even commit them. Religion was also one thing he had gradually learned to despise. The fact that you are immediately branded as a sinner and that you must forcibly love God or face the wrath of his divine power was absurd and made him livid. It’s not like the boy hated repaying a favour, rather, he hated the concept of relying on others. Trust was something he hated giving to others for it had meant that he would risk being hurt by them and previous experiences had reminded him of the pain of betrayal. He thought to himself that maybe he was just too sensitive and over thought things but as the empty promises increased, so did his lack of faith and it felt as if each time, his soul would deteriorate into this hollow shell that prevented him from expressing any emotion. He became indifferent, uncaring of any consequence; stoic to disappointing circumstances. He, of course, resented himself for this and this infelicitous nature was most likely, the reason why he had lost many of his cherished friends. What started out as a young boys heart of gold had suddenly transformed into a heart of stone. Fear and paranoia would cloud his judgement and he would be branded as what contemporary individuals would classify as a pessimist but it was to be expected, for the boy no longer believed that a utopia would be possible and had only worried about approaching a dystopian world of despair. Any silver lining of hope would merely be masqueraded by an overwhelming sense of anguish. -Z.M
M.V. From his view, the halls were filled with little ants. Grade ten's were always the worst. Rushing and pushing, always tripping over bare ground.These little bodies, trapped in the maze of the school, would hopelessly wonder trying to achieve something they don't know of. Being in the last year of his high school life gave him a right to know of the cluelessness carried out by the younger generation. He'd remember when he first stepped foot inside the large hollow building with such confusion about his upcoming life. Fear grew dandelion roots in his soul while confusion took charge when walking through the halls. Everyday hoping to find a way out of this maze. He looked at these kids and smiled. Hoping one day they'll break free.
Watching the snowflakes dance along the violent wind I shudder at the idea of stepping outside, and the fact that my friends want to embrace the cold makes me question them in general. I outspokenly rebel against the idea of embrace the cold but, since the majority want to go outside, I surrender. With a jacket all zipped up to the top, toque on my head, scarf wrapped cosily around my neck, and gloves to cover my fingers, I brace myself for the impeccable cold air that is about to take over. Once I step outside of the doors the cold reaches to my bones and chills throughout the body. Puffs of air escape my mouth as dirt covers the snow that lays uneven over thepathway, or piled on the side. The wind howls louder against my face and through my hair, now with teeth shuttering I pray and hope that winter will end soon, butknowing the weather here that is highly unlikely. This surrounding snow brings silence, enchantment and wonder with it. A friend of mine stands in awe of its beauty, and another one lifts her head to the sky and catches snowflakes in her mouth. I laugh at her childish actions she asks me to join her and, surprisingly, I join her. This brings back childhood memories where I would wake up to see frost on my window indicating that a fresh blanket of snow had fallen onto the ground. I would rush down and bundle up, with each clothing item I put on anticipation grew and grew. Once I am physically outside the excitement busts outside of me. I roll around in the snow, make snowmen, and build a snow fort, you name it. I am reluctant to go back inside but I know I have to go back when I can't feel anything at all. I wonder what happened to me; I had this whole perception of winter of being filled with new adventures and gleeful moments now I just see it as cold and brutal. I pull myself away from my thoughts as I hear loud outburst of laughter. I look over and see everyone making snow angels, how ironic. I join them and realize that my view on winter will always change no matter what; some days I loathe every single bit of winter and, on other days, winter isnâ€™t that shabby. My perception on winter alternates as much as winter alternates itself. -Aira Ribudal
Claudia Nikel Those bright fluorescent lights shining down on the cold concrete are always blinding me when I walk out of the classroom. The dull grey lockers close in on me, my feet carrying me past the open classrooms. The dullness of the hallways saddens me, yet the hustle and bustle of the students warm me. The cracks in the concrete lead you on a new adventure as I make my way to the front of the school. Each step I take down the treacherous stairs, the sunlight engulfs me. The windows of endless possibilities welcome me to the foyer as I look for my friends. The wooden beams make me feel like I have a sturdy roof over my head. I walk into the library wondering around aimlessly. Students scream â€œcheckmateâ€? as they battle in a match of chess. The frustration of the math students floats through the air, as I keep searching for my friends. Not able to find them I go to sit at the comfy, yet somewhat dirty, red chairs. The falling snow, one flake at a time, welcomes me into the school I like to call home.
Arriving to Leger late means no grade 10’s in my way,no scrambling people, no hassle. Well, except for the hassle of being late. Even though some people may think that the hassle is not worth it and they rather come on time for classes, I believe there are some things that you benefit from being late. When I come late, it is usually because I slept in and missed the first bus. After a long hard day of school and studying, working out or hanging out with friends, all you want to do is sleep, waking up being the hardest task. The more sleep I get, the more relaxed I feel. The more relaxed I feel, the more optimistic energy I can express throughout the school day. The second bus I take gets me to school 5 minutes late, so no high school kids are on my bus. There’s only a couple of elderly people and me, but occasionally there’s those high school kids that missed the first bus like me. I like it when there are not many people on the bus because it is much quieter that way. I like to listen to music in this quiet environment with my noise cancelling headphones while I go to school because it feels like I’m in my own world. My own world meaning, not thinking about stressful things like school and human relationships, kind of like stepping out of reality. When I get to school, Leger is empty. I like it when it’s empty, because you don’t have to worry about meeting up with friends who make you stop listening to your music and step back into reality. In the summer as well as spring and autumn, I walk to school from Leger by cutting across the fresh cut grass. I seem to take slower steps when it is warm out, so I can enjoy the beautiful weather outside. In the winter, since it gets really cold, I tend to walk faster trying to get to a warm building as quick as possible. I can’t cut across the grass,because of the amount of snow on the ground, so I take the long way, the sidewalk, to get to school. However, in the winter the sidewalks are usually really slippery. I think everyone in the winter improves their reflexes because we all slip on ice, especially the people who are rushing to get to school when they are late. I usually come late to my first block class, even though I know that my teachers send an email notifying my parents about my poor attendance. Teachers, along with some of my classmates give me that “look” when I walk in late. That “why are you coming in late and disturbing the class look”. It’s awkward because once the teacher gives you that “look”, she’s not teaching the class anymore and it’s generally quiet until you sit down and settle in your own seat. If you do hear someone talk, they’re usually whispering and I always think they are talking about me.But I just head straight to my desk without looking around as quickly and smoothly as I can. Sometimes there are those teachers that keep their classroom door shut closed. The action of opening the door and closing the door is my biggest challenge. This action takes about 15 seconds, but to me when I’m late, these 15 seconds feel the worst. First, I need some courage to open the door, because as I step into the classroom, I am forced to step out of my own world. Then, there’s the sound of opening the classroom door. The sound of opening the door causes the whole class to turn their heads around to see where the sound is coming from. By the time it takes for them to turn their heads you’re walking in, one foot in the hallway and one foot in the classroom and you prone to have eye contact with everyone in the class. Yet again, they give you that “look”. I never know what to say when I take the next step into the classroom. Do I just sit down quietly so I don't disturb the class? Or do I say sorry and sit down at my desk? I find that walking from Leger to school is the only good part of being late. I realize why teachers and my parents want me to come to school on time, but the walk to school gives me a shameless feeling. What I believe is this: That reality is the leading cause of the stress among those in touch with it, and this walk to school helps me feel like I am escaping from my reality. -Maki Oba
As I wait, I decide to sit on a couch at the front of Lillian Osborne on a cold Saturday afternoon. The couch I am sitting on is a grey single seat couch; itâ€™s made out of a plastic leather-like material. As I shift around it makes an unpleasant noise. In front of where I sit is an office with tall glass doors surrounded by a cluster of empty, tall tables and chairs. On a far right wall there is a television that flips through daily announcements; volunteering, clubs, events. Next to the TV is an analog clock that ticks slow and loud. On the same wall are metal doors with out of season Christmas lights that hang on them; they lead to a gymnasium. Coming from the gym are loud voices, whistles, screeching of shoes against the floor, and the sound of a basketball being dribbled up and down the court. The pungent odor of sweat drifts down the halls, towards the place I am seated. To my left there are more red couches, all empty, except an older couple that sounds like they are embarking on an enjoyable conversation. In front of those couches are towering windows that create a barrier between the calm frosty outdoors, and the warmth of the indoors. On the ceiling are fans, not turned on, and lights that are on, but many burnt out; beside the office, are the front doors, used to enter and exit the school. Every time the doors are opened a shocking cold breeze comes rushing inside as if the barrier separating the outdoors, and the indoor has been broken. This makes me draw my knees closer in towards my chest. All of a sudden I hear small, fast, footsteps, ones of a child running. Out of the corner of my eye, I see he is wearing a blue coat and black pants. He is running in the of the gym, which brings my attention to the clock. Reading the time I realize its time for me to leave, so I get up from my comfortable spot and I walk towards the doors. As I exit the school, I once again feel that shocking winter cold. -A.Y.