It was the best of times; it was the worst of times. And along with memories, venerable buildings must be saved.
When my kids started complaining recently about having to go back to school, I told them the same thing my parents used to tell me: “You’re going to look back on these days as the best of your lives.” Sometimes I find my mouth saying other shockingly unhip dad stuff like, “Are you trying to heat the whole outdoors!?” when they leave the door open, or “If your friend jumped off a bridge, would you jump off a bridge?” (I say that whenever they’re thinking about jumping off a bridge somewhere.) Anyway, I was reminded of my sage advice this week when I got the rare chance to walk inside my old elementary school in rural Virginia for the first time in decades. The original building was built in 1916, and the whole place closed down in 1989. But on this day, part of the Millboro School was open for just a few hours during a fundraiser to help transform the complex into a community center and perhaps an old folks’ home.