In elementary school back to school meant a new lunch box...my favorite was my Hong Kong Phooey metal lunch box:
And who doesn't love a new box of 64 Crayola crayons? They still make me giddy.
As a teenager I loved the new clothes aspect of going back to school. We lived in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, a place devoid of any malls, so unless you wanted to wear the same kind of Chic jeans that every other girl in school had, you needed to take a shopping trip to the big city. Like Grand Rapids, population less than 200,000, and definitely less than that in the '80s. But a whole lot more selection than the Carhartt's and Levi's at our local Winkelman's (not the chain, but actually a family named "Winkelman.")
Any song by Prince, but especially Purple Rain, reminds me of my first year going to college. It blasted out of every boom box in every window in every dorm. That and the Violent Femmes.
And then as a teacher, going back to school meant endless work. The time spent in the classroom is minor in relation to the time spent getting prepared for 130 kids in your classroom throughout the day.
And now it means that my kids are no longer home during the day, a presence I find quite comforting. I like knowing right where they are. What they are doing. Who they are doing it with. I like not rushing off in the morning. I like dinner at 7 with everyone at the table. It means new routines. New schedules. A new job. Shorter days. Cozy nights. Just a different rhythm.
I'm not one to embrace change. Can you tell?