“There are a million rules for being a girl. There are a million things you have to do to get through each day. High school has things that can trip you up, ruin you, people say one thing and mean another, and you have to know all the rules, you have to know what you can and can’t do.”
From where we stand, I can still remember how this used to be ‘the’ spot. The spot where we used to oggle our crushes, spot who’s with whom, bitch about someone we know and so on. I had a different group of friends back then. Our group was pretty famous in our campus. Some would say it was probably because we were composed of the school heartrobs, both pink and blue lesbians, some would say because we were the rule breakers, some would say because it was our connection with the higher batches, some would say we are nice but that would depend on who you were talking to.
I can still remember how we would hide our mobile phones under this wooden platform, or inside the cabinet at the back of this blackboard or toss it outside the window when the teacher is approaching. I can still remember how class presidents would write, noisy, standing, quiet was once listed in the board. I can remember how some lunch breaks would be spent in our sandos and pantylets lying on top of each other in the floor, or playing cards and pusoy dos during lunch breaks.
I can still remember how days are filled with receiving and giving at least three letters to friends with pet names such as ‘star’ or ‘cheatmate’ or ‘kisses’ when really, we were just with each other before the class. I can still remember how in between class breaks, all of the students are at the corridor, spotting their crushes in subtle moves or how one student asks about three to four other students to accompany her to pee, or how we would go to the corridor of the higher batches and chat or how we would sneak out to the cafeteria and stay there for hours skipping our classes, how a trip to other rooms for a class function such as computer lab or science lab means a chance to do the cat walk because you know other classes are going to see you.
It’s so nice to actually see the people who I buy from every afternoon since I was in Grade three. They’ve seen me grow up. They’ve seen me graduate from Gradeschool and Highschool. And they’re still here. The streets outside school feels like home whenever you see a familiar face. And it’s also overwhelming to know that they do remember your name after 8 years.
And to my Fourth Year Adviser, and to all the professors who has molded me when I was in High School, I can definitely say that now, I can finally appreciate all the times you scolded me for wearing hanging and short blouses, a long skirt, a very short small folded socks, for walking too slowly, for having secret pocket inside our necktie, for brushing my hair during class, for wearing wide jugging pants, for not attending practices during intrams and for always being late during flag ceremony. It’s funny how students used to hate teachers for always noticing their wrongdoings when in fact, they’re just trying to make you a better person.
High School will always be in my heart and memory, all the friends, professors, lessons and every bit of story, a piece of puzzle i will always want to solve.
“Sometimes I think high school is one long hazing activity: if you are tough enough to survive this, they’ll let you become and adult. I hope it’s worth it.” It is.