Well, the graduation is done. Jen is officially finished with high school, and off to Miami of Ohio in the Fall. But not before we all go to Abaco for a graduation dive trip and vacation this summer.
I know every dad is proud when one of their kids does well, and I’m certainly no different. Jen took home academic honors … in the top 12 of her class. And it was a huge class. Probably 400 graduates. It took a long, long, time for them to all walk across the stage and receive their diplomas.
The ceremony at DAR Constitution Hall was pretty spectacular. They did something kind of interesting. With all the dignitaries and potential inspirational speakers in this area, they went back to an alum, who had come from a fairly humble high school career to hold two masters degrees and had come back to work at Fairfax County Public Schools. I suppose for those of us who never attended Annandale High School, a dignitary might have been more entertaining. But for the kids, I think it was good to hear from someone not unlike them, and only removed from the ceremony at DAR Constitution Hall by 15 years or so.
I have kind of mixed emotions about posting this picture. While I truly enjoy my life as it is now, it reminds me as much as anything how things might have been. Not something I can dwell on at length without getting too maudlin. This night was about Jenni, and her accomplishments.
There is a tradition at Annandale that the drum major for that year has the opportunity to lead the band one last time, after walking in with the class, during “Pomp and Circumstance”. (still the most boring trombone counter melody ever written) So she took the stage, and the podium, and conducted the band as the rest of her graduating class marched in. She was back on stage to receive academic honors, and finally to receive her diploma. It was quite a night. Congratulations, Jenni. You’ve made me a very, very proud dad. What better gift for Fathers Day.
All the pics … well, the best of them, are up on Flickr. I didn’t get a lot of good shots, and will have to get one of the professional shots of Jen receiving her diploma.
On a completely unrelated note … I can’t believe Tim Russert has died of a heart attack. He’s being eulogized as one of the best journalists of our time. I don’t think I can add anything to that. He was certainly an old school journalist, and in this most contentious of political years, he will be very, very sorely missed.
Only 58 years old. Only 8 years older than me.
Back on the eliptical tomorrow morning.