One of the downsides of working from home is there’s no way to get away from it. If I take a break, or even a vacation, my work desk is right there in the spare bedroom snickering at me. In fact it’s understood that from now on, even when we all go back to the office and resume whatever normal is, if there’s bad weather in the forecast or the office will have to be closed for any reason we’ll just take our laptops home.
I was feeling unusually nostalgic the other day and on my lunch break decided to look up my old primary school—the one I went to from kindergarten through sixth grade, and as I was looking at it on Google Maps I discovered there’s a public park that I never knew about right next to the school. And it opened in 1979. How did I never hear about this? There was a long fence that ran all around the school so we wouldn’t wander out into the street in front of the school but behind the school there were trees. It looked like a dense forest that went on forever, and I wanted so badly to explore that forest, to see how far it went and what secrets it held.
Well, apparently its biggest secret was that it only goes back about fifty feet before it opens up into a public park with a playground.
The funny thing is there was one day when I was in fourth grade that a couple of my friends tried to convince me to play hooky after lunch. And, sure, The Little Rascals made it seem appealing, but I couldn’t figure out what the point would be for us. First of all I didn’t think we could get away with it. Our class was in one of the long trailers called “portables” that stood between the main school building and the playground. It was long but narrow and I’m pretty sure the sudden disappearance of three of us would be noticed immediately. Also the school was, and still is, in the middle of a suburban neighborhood. There wasn’t anything within walking distance and even if there were none of us had any money. And even if we did go anywhere how were we supposed to get back home?
I realize now we could have slipped past the fence and gone over to Granbery Park. I’d have finally gotten the chance to explore those woods which would take up, well, about five minutes, and instead of playing on our regular school playground we could play on the park’s slightly different playground, which would have taken up another ten minutes. And I seriously doubt we could slip back into class without being noticed.
At least now I know and one of these days I’m going to take a day off from work and go over there to see what I missed. It’ll be an official vacation day. I mean, I could play hooky, but what would be the point?