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Around the Bluhmin’ Town


I went back to high school. Well, not exactly. But I did end up walking (wandering lost) around a high school campus, trying to help my grandson with his orientation. Since he has autism, I thought I would be useful. Not so sure about that. Adults, be very afraid of high schools because they are large, sprawling places with throngs of teenagers all looking slightly bewildered and lost! What I found out is that high school is no place for a grandma on a hot day in August.

So in case you haven’t noticed, schools around town are back in session, and parents everywhere are rejoicing. The boredom has ended, to only be replaced by the hectic schedules, homework, and never-ending list of school supplies to buy. Kids are trying to get back in the groove, only to be faced with the reality that they have to get up early and suddenly become organized.

We may be still be in the clutches of summer, but vacations have officially come to a screeching halt. Those little yellow school buses are making frequent stops, school zone crosswalks are filled with giggling kids, so it’s time to drive slow and enjoy the scenery. Parents everywhere can be seen taking a collective sigh of relief, kids are happy to show off their new clothes, and teachers brace themselves for another busy year. School bells are ringing.

For many children, this is the time of heartbreaks, triumphs, and pinkeye. Some kids make the team and life is good, holding promise for better things to come. Other kids have tried and face the rejection of not being on “the list,” that is taped on the coach’s door letting the world know who made the cut and who didn’t. Children will have to deal with the coughs, sneezes, colds, flu, and possible pinkeye infection. Yes, it’s not all fun and games…school can be tough.

My friend’s teenage daughter woke up the first day of school and screamed when she looked in the mirror. Somehow, in the middle of the night, several evil pimples sprouted, causing a whole lot of drama and a near refusal to attend the first day of high school. Yes, going to school isn’t without quite a few trials and tribulations. It takes considerable courage to get up and walk into a new school with a stuffed backpack, all the time feeling miserably self-conscious.

Teachers ought to be our heroes. Every day, they strive to give our children a spark of interest that will make them actually want to embrace the art of algebra, or to find happiness in the pages of a book. Teachers know that in the masses of children they inspire each day, might be standing the next great inventor, future President, and scientist who will help save the planet. Yet, the teachers’ real gift is in keeping the attention of a child or teen, who typically has the attention-span of about ten seconds. How do they do that?

Know a parent with school-age children? Give them an extra nod of approval because they need all the help they can get! Drive slowly around those school zones and watch closely – you might be seeing students, but they’ll be our future leaders. Know a teacher? Hug them now and avoid the line. Dear Readers, happy days are here again…school is back in session!


Judy Bluhm is a writer and a local realtor. Have a comment or a story? Email Judy at