24 Years Later...

While I wouldn't really call myself an event scrapper, I do tend to photograph and scrap special occasions and holidays far more than everyday life. I'm trying to do a better job of photographing and scrapping the everyday. Those things that seem so ordinary or boring that they don't deserve a photo or layout are exactly the things I'll want to look back on decades from now.

I say this with certainty because I just attended the 50th anniversary celebration of my high school.

I attended Granada High School for four years: 1986-1990. I was involved with clubs, attended sporting activities, and had lots of friends. Plenty of things happened that I should have photographed, even back in the Dark Ages before digital photography. During the approximately 750ish days I spent at GHS, care to guess how many times I took pictures on campus? Never. Not once. No pictures of special presentations I gave, spirit days, or club activities. No picture of me standing in front of the school. No picture of the locker I shared with my best friend, Nancy. I didn't take a single picture of high school. And it's not like I never took pictures - I took a lot of pictures during those years, just never at school.

Fortunately, there are photos in the yearbook, plus dance photos I bought, and a picture from when my parents came to school to watch me compete in the Physics Club's cardboard boat race. (I'll try to find it the next time I'm at my parents' house and scan it to share.) But I don't have a single photo of where my friends and I ate lunch. No photos of any classrooms. No picture of the 'Big G' in the center of the quad that everyone carefully walked around lest they get beat up for defiling it. No pictures of a place that was a pretty big deal for four years of my life. So when I visited Granada High for the 50th celebration, I took pictures of EVERYTHING.  

I took pictures of things that looked pretty much the same: 

I took pictures of things that looked completely different:

I took pictures of what had been added: 

(No fence when I was a student.)

(Nor a fancy marquee.)

(New display cases, currently filled with items from each decade.)

And I took pictures of things that were missing.

(No Big G)

(No lockers.  Mine was on that blank wall on the right.  This was surprisingly emotional for me.)

I took pictures of old friends...

... some of my favorite teachers....

.... my old principal...

... and my family.

(My sister Kari, GHS Class of 1993.  Her son Timothy, GHS Class of 2019.)

I took dozens of other photos, trying to capture those teenage memories. I spent a lot of time walking around the campus alone, ducking into familiar places and snapping photos. I spent a lot of time just standing still and looking, trying to remember what it was like when I was a student there. I was mesmerized by the new science wing and the new media center, confused when I walked into what I thought was the library and it was actually the leadership room, and blown away by the synthetic track and field.

The whole experience was surreal. I really enjoyed my day and am so glad I went, but I was overwhelmed. It is incredibly odd to feel both 17 and 42 simultaneously.

Happy birthday, Granada High!  I hope the next 50 years are just as great.

And I hope that today's students are capturing those little details and everyday moments that they wish they could see 24 years from now.


  1. That is awesome that they had the celebration! LOVING all the photos!! I don't have any from high school either ... but I have a TON from Junior High ... totally odd!!!!!

  2. Wow ... that would be a really surreal experience! The school I graduated from was actually a brand new school that opened my junior year. We were the first "real" graduating class, since there were only a handful of seniors the year before us. We were housed in a junior high school building while a new high school was built. Once the new high school was built, the community (especially alumni) were invited to tour and see it. I remember walking into the gym and seeing the glass trophy cases ... and way in the back, on the bottom, was our cheerleading photo, ribbons, spirit stick and the trophy we won. It was the first state trophy ever won for the school, and it was cheerleaders that did it! :) It was a 3rd place, but we were pretty proud of ourselves! :) Of course the cases were filled up with trophies and awards, game balls, etc and the gym had many flags proclaims state championships won by teams in the years after. It was about that time that I started feeling old, LOL! :) Now I have classmates that have children that have graduated from the new school and I feel REALLY old!! :)

    One thing about this generation of kids, they will have lots of photos to remember all the details of their lives by!!

  3. fun event. The no lockers shocks me also. tfs.

  4. how fun
    my 30 yr reunion is in the fall - can't wait

  5. Glad you went back and had that surreal experience.

    P/s: I live in a really tiny country that is a concrete jungle so I try to take pics of buildings/places before they are demolished to make way for new commercial buildings.

  6. That is awesome!! Makes me want to go back to Ponderosa and check it out to see what is the same and what is different. Has Steve gone back to check it out?! :)


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