Fact is that with my current (temporary) exile at my parents, I have been able to indulge in a spot of nostalgia as I ride the bus in and out of town to school. OK, due to changes in the layout of the road the bus doesn’t travel the exact route that it used to – or start from the same place for that matter. However, once it leaves town and gets out into the sticks, all the memories come flooding back.
It’s funny, but it’s not just the memories of the places that you go past. Each place has specific memories associated with incidents or routine. For example, one of the bus stops that I’ve been travelling through used to be where I got off after a hard day at sixth form college. And I remember the day before my 17th birthday as I was waiting to get off, somebody swung their bag onto their shoulder and knocked one of my contact lenses out. Then I remember that one had to wait on the side of the road as the bus moved off before you could cross and that the pavement wasn’t exactly the widest piece of concrete and tarmac ever created.
I’ve actually been feeling quite smug which is a bit sad really. As I get on the bus in the morning, amongst all the current students travelling to sixth form or the FE college I can’t help thinking of these memories and at the same time glowing in some childish idea of ‘well of course, you weren’t even born when I used to travel this highway…’ And then I start with regrets because I know that way back then, I really didn’t make the most of the self-same opportunities that these kids have and I hope and pray that they don’t look their gift horse in the mouth in the same way that I did.