These are the thoughts of a Texas transplant in West Michigan who makes his living as a newspaper reporter by evening, and a struggling novelist by day.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

kind words

this week my supervisor was on vacation, so i was in chargeof the newsroom. i'd been in charge for the day before, but never the week. on top of it, our director of audience resigned and left tuesday. and some other higher ups were on vacation.

nonetheless, the week went well and the reporters responded vigorously to both coming up with their own stories and being assigned stories. plenty of copy until monday. the design team helped, too, by editing stories. big thumbs up to them.

still, i was ready for a drink last night (although i'd had two the night before). no, i wasn't out trying to outdrink mig. dawn and i stayed home and rested. i needed it. so i nursed by jack and coke and felt good.

it was late and dawn says, "here's some letters for you." she handed me over some folded pieces of construction paper.

they were notes from the kids in the migrant program.

the notes were simple, mostly a sentence or two. but they were very kind, sweet and endearing to me. it meant a lot that these kids, whom i've met handful of times, mean quite a lot to me. i've become almost as invested in them educationally as dawn and steph.

i know it sounds strange, but there's somethng special about the kids that i can't put my finger on. we clicked since the first day i met them last summer and we continue to do so. i enjoy their questions and constant asking for stories and i enjoy telling them stories and listening to them read or interact in class.

i've still got the picture collage on my desk that they made last year. now i will add these cards to that area.

the cards contained messages such as arlette thanking me for putting her in the newspaper to misa thanking me to saying in a story that he made a goal in a soccer match with marlynn.

when i went to the classroom last time and gave them the article in which juan and arlette were quoted in the paper, she was thrilled. she kept saying, "thaks for making me famous." now that means more than most things someone can say to me.

perhaps i've done something to enhance their lives. i hope so. but i think they've done a similar thing to me. they've made me a more caring person. i'd honestly like to continue to interact with them. maybe over the course of the year they can write a letter or something. that'd be nice, see how they're doing in their lives outside the classroom.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Roel, congratulations on a doing well while doing good, as the hippies used to say :-)

2:30 PM


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