Saturday, May 29, 2010

Dustin Graduates

My nephew, Dustin, graduated last night.  His class had close to 500 graduating.  It was a long, looooooonnnngggg ceremony!

It's no secret that I don't enjoy graduation ceremonies.  The parties afterward are great, but I hate being trapped listening to pomp and nonsense, even when it involves someone I really love. I think I've reached my lifetime limit of meetings and ceremonies.  Maybe after 10 or 15 years of retirement, I'll be able to tolerate them again.  Maybe not.

There were a few highlights where I came alert.  The first was a flyover.  It was very pretty.  Three planes flew over 3 times and did a few tricks.

Just as I was taking this picture, one veered off, looking as if there might be a collision. I jerked the camera as I snapped. 

The next bit of excitement was when they finally called my nephew's name.  I'm so proud of him - he's a really, really wonderful guy.

He's the one just to the right of the flag.  

This is Dustin walking to his seat.  I think this photo is interesting in that Dustin is fairly clear, but the others are a blur.  Some day, seemingly in the blink of an eye, his high school years will seem like a bit of a blur.

Another source of entertainment were the balloons that were flying all about.  It was interesting watching where they might go. It was getting windy.  Rain was predicted.  Really dark storm clouds were hovering over us for a good part of the night.  That was entertaining.  Will they finish before the rain starts?  Will lightening strike one of us?  How fast could I get out of this stadium?  Would we all be trampled in the rush to get out? There were even a few drops of rain here and there to keep this train of thought going.

More entertainment was to be had for people who know how to have fun when trapped.  My dad counted the girls with the name Nicole.  Apparently, Nicole was a really poplar name around here 18 years ago. My mom and I entertained ourselves by trying to make sense of the order names were called. I also, spent ages looking through the names to see who I taught in elementary school.

The graduating class was really amazing.  This is one of the best high schools in the state.  There were over 5 million dollars worth of scholarships awarded to this class and that doesn't include the HOPE scholarship fund sponsored by the state.  Sixty-four percent of the students graduated with honors.  My brother-in-law teasingly suggested grades were inflated.  Hey, hey, hey... not true.  Test scores back up this percentage.  I taught in this county and am very proud of its reputation.

The after party was much more fun.  When my niece graduates, I think I'll skip the ceremony and go directly to the party.

Here' my nephew with his proud mom (my sweet sister).
Pam looks so young, but actually, she'll be 45 in a few months.
Doesn't she look great?  Isn't Dustin a cutie?

This is Dustin with his girlfriend, Jessica.  They are so sweet together.

My good friend, Kathy, has always believed it is important to know how and when to gush properly.  When one receives a gift or favor, one should sincerely and appropriately carry on.  The giver should have no doubt that his gift or action was appreciated.

My nephew got many nice gifts.  I was very impressed with how he handled it.  This guy knows how to gush properly.  Nothing about his gushing was fake.  Each giver got a warm hug and plenty of carrying on as their gift was opened. 

I was completely distracted after this and completely forgot to take more photos.  There were other people I wish I had taken pictures of.  I should have taken a photo of the table, which included photos hanging from the chandelier.  I should have taken a picture of the cute graduation cake and the gifts.  I guess I'll have to check out photos taken by other people and hope they weren't as distracted..


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