6 comments

Contemporary Creative Nonfiction High School

This is how I imagine it could have happened. More confident, perhaps some might suggest cocky, with no sportiness or experience about me I would still ask. After finding a quiet moment, before she reached her little black car in the school carpark I would have taken a deep breath and said “Would you come to the formal with me?” And she would have seen my confidence and she would have recognized the courage it had taken to ask such a question. With a smile and a flutter of those amazing eyes she would have said “Yes, I’d love to go with you.” I imagine that is how it would have happened if I had discovered the courage.

After this I would have needed to find a suit, a clever form of transport that would stand out while being affordable. Perhaps I could have asked around and discovered that one or two of my high school friends were also going to our end of high school formal and we could have all gone together. Perhaps my date had ideas of her own in regards to making a grand entrance to this once in a lifetime event. I’ve always thought a horse and carriage had an element of elegance and grace, romantic and memorable but not corny.

That night we would have danced and laughed and drank and made those memories, some that get published in the school magazine and some that never get shared with another living soul. The night would have been magic, starting with the class dinner at the local Golf Club and then on to the Town Hall for the main event. We would have sat together at that dinner and held hands letting everyone know that regardless of what happened after, in that moment we were together. We would look down the table at out classmates and see who was there and wonder about those who were not. We would consider judging our classmates on what they wore, how they ate, what they drank. We would talk about teachers, that is of course until those teachers arrived. Hours would pass and dessert would have been shared. Then we would see the work of those fellow students who had decorated the Town Hall and made it ours for that night. Maybe I would have been one of those students too. When you ask out one of the popular girls you suddenly become popular too.

I guess there would have been a bit of time where we would have gone to our homes to change into hired finery. A suit for me and a dress for her. There would have been photos, so many photos, there are always photos at events like formals (or so I am lead to understand). I would have smiled because you smile in those kind of photos partly because it is a happy moment you wish to remember but mostly because I could not fathom the level of luck that would be with me at that very moment with that special girl on my arm.

What an incredible night! The Town Hall would be bright until the local band began to play. Then the lights would go down and the frantic fun would begin. Forgetting the stress and pressure of exams, results, jobs and careers beyond school the only focus would be sharing laughs, singing songs off key, drinking and eating, perhaps finding a private corner for a first kiss.

Then the night would end. The class would spill out onto the street and we would all rethink those crazy contraptions we had chosen to arrive in. Fire engines, horse and carriage, taxi, mates car… Not all would be great ways to leave but then someone who thought to bring a minibus would discover they were everyone’s best mate. Drinks first at the local pub which thankfully was just around the corner (half would go to one pub and the other half to the other) and then there would be more stories, some shared but all remembered.

And finally that one single moment of unusual confidence would have ended up on her doorstep where we would have been kissing goodnight in the porch light. From that moment my life would have changed but who is to say it would have changed for the better. For I had two formals I could have gone to and I chose to attend neither. That moment of courage eluded me the first year when I wanted it the most and the desire to go to a formal just never existed that following year. Years later with so much life experience I found my perfect girl, my perfect life and the friends who helped me to find that confidence so many years before I lacked.

I am not the sporty, popular kid who knows how to walk the walk and talk the talk and I still wonder now if it was a mistake not to have gone to my high school formal. I heard later of kids in my class who chose to attend on their own. I heard later of the fun everyone had at each of those nights I chose to miss, every so often I look back through the school magazines from those two years and read about the formal nights. Then and only are there twinges of regret.

Those old classmates I rarely see now and to be honest I only miss them every now and again. Those strong friendships I did inherit from then and later years are still super strong and growing stronger all the time. It makes me wonder what if anything I truly missed. Life is full of choices and moments and I have chosen which moments to live. With a happy home, wife I adore who also loves me too (except when I snore), three amazing kids and the greatest friends anyone could hopeful I strongly believe my choices were indeed the best ones for me. I am the one who skipped his formal, twice.

October 01, 2020 05:57

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6 comments

Vajeda Kardar
00:59 Oct 08, 2020

Is this a true story of yours??? I felt so when I came to ending para. Good narration!! you have written the most part imaginative future style. Liked it.

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Tim Law
05:38 Oct 08, 2020

Thanks Vajeda yes I did have two seperate chances to attend my end of school formal (year 12 and year 13) and ended up attending neither. I met the girl who has become my wife many years later and I am happy...

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Vajeda Kardar
06:02 Oct 08, 2020

That's so good....stay blessed

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Tim Law
23:02 Oct 09, 2020

Many thanks for your support Vajeda. Yes a self reflection of sorts. You stay blessed also.

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Rebecca Lee
04:06 Oct 05, 2020

That was a good story. I think you need to look through it and check on a few things - little tweaks, but overall, it was good. If you have time, would you please read my stories- I have one for this upcoming thing that I really would like to get some feedback on - the time capsule.

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Tim Law
02:42 Oct 06, 2020

Thanks for your feedback Becky... Happy to check out your latest 👍

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