FC: The Remnants of My Past | Martin Bacala
1: Table of Contents | My New Dog 2 The Last Event 6 7-3-4 Yankee Delta 10 My First Day of Pre-K 12 The Fun-Yun Dance 15
2: My New Dog It’s July of 2010. My dad woke me up early to cut the grass, because it was still a cool temperature. I walked outside to the lawn mower with bed hair and morning sand still in my eyes. I lazily walk to the field of green and start the motor. As I mow rows and rows of the long grass, the smells of grass, dew, and exhaust surround me. About halfway through cutting the lawn, I felt something soft run past both of my ankles. Confused about what just happened, I stop mowing and watch as two dogs run up to me and start sniffing.
3: “Oh, look! Two pomeranians!” I thought. I drop down and start petting both dogs. As both dogs jump on me, I hear a voice from behind telling the dogs to get off of me. I glance back and see a dark man, wearing flip-flops, a black bandana on his forehead, and torn up blue jeans. He reeked of cigarette smoke. The dogs quickly get off of me and run off behind him. I make eye contact with the man and wonder if I should be running away because of his frightening complexion. This, however, was not the case. I stand back up and and shake the man’s hand. I mentally take note of his upper arm and chest that are ridden with tattoos. The man smiles, and shows what is left of his teeth.
4: He says in a pleasant, Southern tone, “You want a d-aog?” I respond with a confusing tone, “Uh, what?” The man explains how he and his girlfriend don’t have enough time to take care of two dogs, so he needs to give one away. I hurry to the garage and ask my dad, who then walks to the scary man in our front yard. After a series of small conversations, my finally pick up my new dog, and thank the man. I hurry inside my house, and surprise my mom with our new dog! But, that’s a different story.
6: My Last Event Last Saturday, I swam my last ever swim event, the 200 Medley Relay. My relay consisted of me and three other swimmers. Before jumping into the pool, I thought to myself, “How do you want to end your nine year career?” I repeat this question over and over in my mind. The judges say through the speaker, “Swimmers, in the water”. I jump into the frigid water feet first, and place them on the wall. I grab for the rubber diving block bars with my arms.
7: “Take your mark,” the judges say. I pull myself up into a crouching position. BEEP. I push off with all my might into the water and go to streamline position. As I kick butterfly, I wait until I am out of breath and pierce through the water and start swimming backstroke. Adrenaline goes through my veins. I keep pushing myself. The question once again comes into thought, “How do you want to end your swim career?” I push myself even harder. The green and white pool flags are finally in my view above me. I count my backstroke pulls, “One, two” and do a flip turn. Time to go beast mode.
8: As I swam my last ever 25 yards, my mind takes me back to when I was eight years old, and starting my first ever swim practice. It's a bitterxweet moment. The flags at this end of the pool finally come into view. I count the last few strokes I will ever swim as a competitive swimmer. One, two, three. I touch the touchpad-mounted wall. Once I pulled myself out of the frigid water, I say out loud, after nine years, "I. AM. DONE."
10: 7-3-4 Yankee Delta On September 2, 2011, I got to fly an airplane for the first time. It was around 8am, and the sun's morning rays breaking through the fog. It was over at Clark County Airport, and I, along with two other students entered a white and blue-striped Cessna 172. I volunteered first to fly with the instructor. Upon starting the engine, we quickly taxied to the runway. As we left the ground, I felt my stomach turn, as if I were on a roller coaster.
11: At 2000 feet in the air, the cold breeze felt amazing. The sun’s orange, vibrant rays reflected over the Ohio river. The busy interstate was congested with traffic. All of the tiny cars and trucks look like toys, I thought. In the horizon, I could see the Louisville skyline. We flew over several exuberant, expensive looking suburbs, a mining rig with a large body of sky blue water, and unsurprisingly, miles and miles of farmland. It truly was one of the most beautiful experiences I have ever had.
12: My First Day of Pre-K The first day of Pre-K was a very sad day for me. It was the first time I would be away from mom and dad. Days before, I was told over and over again that I would be fine. This, however, was not the case. When my dad walked in with me, we were greeted by my teacher, Miss Chait. She had the stereotypical nineties look on her: Long hair, a denim jacket too big for her, etc. She gave us a tour of the gigantic classroom, with the sitting floor, play kitchen, and computer tables taking up half the room, and the cabinets, bathrooms, tables, and arts and crafts taking up the other half.
13: After we had the tour, I had to say goodbye to my dad. This is when the chaos begins. I began crying because I didn’t want my dad to leave my side. He decided to stay in the class with me for a bit longer. That day, our class was supposed to go to Music class. I remember walking in a single file line, and sitting down criss-cross applesauce. Well, as the kids sat down, I stood back up, wiped the mucus off my nose, and ran to the back of the classroom to my dad.
14: Later on that day, I began to calm down and start to socialize with other kids. I remember making friends with kids named Ronnie, Eli, Max, and Reuben. As things start to calm down, I began to wonder where my dad went. I asked the teacher, and she said that my dad went to the store. Uh-oh. Again, I start bawling my eyes out. This time, the teacher escorted the screaming and crying me down a hallway, and into a second grade classroom where my sister was. At the end of the day, my voice was scratchy from all of the crying.
15: The Fun Yun Dance Sixth grade, a period of social awkwardness and being self conscious. After Science class, Amanda and I would walk down to the cafeteria, and create dances and songs based off what she would eat that day. We’ve had various performances, such as the Fun-Yun dance, the Dorito dance, the carrot song, and the Fruit Roll-up dance. Each song consisted of various onomatopoeias, such as “Munch, munch” and “Crunch, crunch” because of the sounds the food made.