I went back to my high school a year after I had graduated. When I got there, the gym was packed, full of people writing final exams… all the people who would be graduating that year, all the people that stayed for their OAC year when I left after grade 12.
They were all just finishing writing their exams and filtering out of the gym. I saw Hannah walk by me, and Adam & Steven Lacombe. They waved at me and kept going. Soon I saw more people that I knew, Sherry, Wendy and Renee, Jon and Stephen and Phil… all people who shared the same year with me, all people who stayed for that OAC year that I didn’t.
As they left the gym, I followed behind, wondering what was going on and wanting to talk to them, to find out everything I’d missed by not staying that year with them. Jon was leading everyone somewhere out back of the school, to a place that doesn’t actually exist behind my old high school in the real world. There was a path through a rocky field, and a creek in a ditch at one end. On the other side of the creek was a tent. People wandered off, until it was only a small group of us following Jon to his tent.
We had to jump across the creek at one point. I jumped over it first, and everyone else was slow to follow. There was something we had to fight on the other side of the creek, but I was the only one there. I didn’t really understand why everyone else was staying so far behind.