Without Further Ado

It’s no less frustrating for being universal: when there’s a lot to say, there’s no time left to say it.

I’m back in Arkansas working on (procrastinating) cleaning out the house. In the last two weeks I have recovered from prom prep, taken/facilitated a hunter safety course (this is also known as supervising kids with guns), moved everything out of my apartment and into my classroom, turned in final grades, returned to the lower-48, and floated the upper Buffalo. And I may have bought a boat. More on that all of that later.

For now, I present to you the great and brilliant beauties of Venetie, Alaska, dressed in their finest and wearing their happiest smiles.

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In the hours leading up to the big event, my door was open. Everyone needed the phone or the shower or the mirror or just some help zipping up. Terri had her curling iron going full steam (can you tell I have no idea what a curling iron is or how it works?) for hours. Some girls had found dresses elsewhere by the time our box o finery arrived, and some hadn’t. In the end, everyone found something to wear and looked beautiful, and I had a stash of dresses hanging in my classroom closet, patiently waiting for next year.

Prom was awesome. The girls melted my heart: “Ms O! It’s the last song, you have to get on the dance floor!” “Ms O! Come take a picture with us!” “Ms O, you have to play laser tag!” I found myself in a lot of selfies, grinning ear-to-ear next to a kid vibrating with glee.

I got to see people who are usually very restrained cut loose and dance to bruno mars with cardboard cutouts (Paperboy turned out to be a real player). There were activities like laser tag and board games and baking and movies, and we had an unlimited supply of pizza. B brought a fish he’d just caught, because what’s prom without uninvited guests hanging by the door?

The prom committee slept over in my classroom after the big event, and we played bananagrams, watched Super Troopers, re-prommed in our jammies (they weren’t ready for it to be over, so they went back to the gym, turned down the lights, cranked up the music, and rocked out until they were dead on their feet), and made 3 am cookies. I finally crashed out around five, listening to the birds getting laryngitis from singing all through the dusky night. When I woke up, the girls were scattered all over the room like puppies, tangled up carelessly around each other and the furniture.
Thank you a thousand times to everyone who made it happen for us. We’ve started something here that is going to be a part of this village community for years to come.
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One thought on “Without Further Ado

  1. Sounds awesome (except that you have to clean out the house now)! Looking forward to hear more about your potential boat purchase 🙂
    Thanks to our super sluggish internet, I can only see the early winter version of the prom pictures (= a black square), but your words paint great pictures. Hope you’ll have time to explore a bit more of Alaska before winter sets in!

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