This year was the first time I was able to attend my junior high school’s graduation ceremony. Usually I’m at another school but this year the day happened to fall on the day I would be there. Naturally I wanted to attend as this would be my final time seeing my 3rd years.
When I arrived to school, I got a lot of double-takes and gasps from my students. They never saw me in a suit before so it was a bit of a shock to them. I got a lot of compliments, which is always good for the ego 🙂 “Diego, you look really nice in that suit,”said Ina. “Oh Diego, you really fit with that suit on!” said Shinji. Of course there were the “Oh, very handsome-u!” from Maido. Silly kids.
I ran into my 3rd years heading towards the auditorium. Nari, who I wasn’t able to see during the final lesson, seemed happy to see me and gave me a high five. Ash, was also very ecstatic. I also ran into Ben Johnson, who gave me a very genuine handshake while saying “Thank you for everything up until now.”
I was a little taken aback so I nervously said “Ahh, don’t worry about it! Donmai, donmai!” Donmai is taken from “don’t mind” which is a slang way of saying “It’s okay!” You usually say it if someone makes a mistake. Naturally, there was a little confusion from everyone when I said that, haha.
The ceremony itself was a bit gloomy. At least in elementary school, there are more things the students do, like play songs or do call-and-responses with the other students. I think I found it solemn because no one claps to anything until you see the students walk off the auditorium. My 3rd years were nice enough to not botch the ceremony but they were making light of it while they were waiting for their names to be called. Ben Johnson also had a very nice speech at the end.
And then the tears came. As soon as we saw them off at the school gates, everyone started to cry. I expected the girls to but I was really surprised to see people like JoKo and Tony tear up. I think Misa was the one who took it the hardest because she was sobbing quite a lot to the point where she left the school way ahead of everyone. That bummed me out because I wanted to have a picture with her! 😦 Oh well. Maybe I’ll see her again someday.
Speaking of pictures, everyone took quite a bit of them, myself included. What really surprised me the most is that almost everyone had an iPhone 5. Kids these days!
“Everyone has an iPhone! Must be nice!” exclaimed Manami.
“You’re telling me. I had a crappy cell phone in college. I’m guessing you don’t have one?” I asked.
“Because mom won’t buy me one!” she pouted.
“Well, I’m sure you’ll get one for graduating or something.”
“Yeah, you’re probably right.” A brief pause. “ARGHH I want to graduate already!!!”
“For the sake of an iPhone? Geez…” I couldn’t help but laugh. It didn’t help that anytime I caught Manami looking at me she was giggling. I bet I’ll see her pull one out when she graduates next year.
Anyway, here are some pictures of me and my now former 3rd years. They’ll be off to high school next year! I knew I had taken too many when I realized I was the only school staff that was by the gates and everyone else were students.
One cool bonus was seeing even more of my former students from last year. I saw Yankee (who really looks like a yankee now), Ayaka and some other girls I couldn’t recognize! Yankee said hi to me and I turned around, saying “Hello!”
“Oh wow, you still remember my name!!” she got excited.
“Yep.” I had a feeling what was going to happen next.
“Hey Diego, what’s my name? Do you remember??” said another girl.
“Uhhh, nope sorry!”
“Ugh you’re the worst!!” This happens pretty often at any school I go to.
“Oh Diego, let’s take a picture!” Yankee said.
I hope they’re doing good in school. Their poor hair! I really don’t like it dyed but whatever. We all have our phases 😛
It really was a bittersweet day. I’m going to miss all of my 3rd years! It’s going to be a really sad day next year though; that’s when the students I started with will graduate. If anything, this year’s graduation showed me that I might have to bring some tissues next time.