March 4, 1995 – Saturday – 6:00 p.m.

Another weekend!

The concert was pretty good last night.  The only people who came from G.A.G. were guys.  There was a basketball game going on for the high school, so that’s where a lot of the girls and some of the guys were.  Clifton was there though and I got to sit next to him.

The Laser Tag arena was booked, so we just stayed at the church.  We rented Maverick, but before we watched it, we toilet papered the new pastor’s house as a sort of welcome.  I had lot’s of fun!

It was six in the morning by the time I went to sleep.

After a few hours of sleep, we all had breakfast at Peggy’s and then went to see Jim, the pastor.  He was outside cleaning up the toilet paper, and he was laughing.  He has a great sense of humor.

Clifton, Trae, Jamie, Jim, and Charlie and I played basketball down in the old gym.  I didn’t play that well, but then again, I never do.  Despite being tall, I’m horrible at basketball.

Pastor Jim went home and then we all just hung around in my room and Charlie’s room.  Then later, after they had left, Charlie and I drove over to Sharon’s.  Everyone was there, except for Bob.

Laura said nothing to me.  I suppose February 10th is the closest I will get to my dream.  And that will do.

Hannah baked some cookies for me.  They were yummy.  We ate Tacos and then Charlie and I came back.

The Lion King came out on video yesterday and Hannah is going to invite me over when she gets it.

I got Veronica’s new phone number this morning and I called them.  They live in Arkansas now.  They moved out there the beginning of October.  I talked to Brittany and Scott.  Shirley was asleep and Veronica and Sherry were at cheerleading tryouts.

They have my number now.  Maybe they will call back.

I also talked to my mom today over the phone.  She refreshed my memory.  Although I want to go home for spring break and see all my friends, I know that most of the time I’ll be stuck at home.  I don’t want to work, but I probably will.  Everyone else will be in school.  I also won’t have a car.  But I have no where else to go, so that’s what I will do for spring break.

And that is also where I came from.  Thank you Lord for my home.  And teach me to be more thankful for my family.

Today, as Charlie and I were driving back from Sharon’s, I looked at the beautiful mountains and listened to the soft music that was playing.  And just like the days back in Siler City and Sanford, these days here at my home in Banner Elk may be some of the greatest days I will ever know.

Advertisement

October 11, 1993 – Monday – 6:05 p.m.

Today is Columbus Day!

Wup dee do!

About thirty minutes ago I returned from the mountains.  It was cold up there.  It is difficult to describe what I’m feeling now.

Today Jonathan and I took a college day.  We both went to visit Lees-McRae.  We left at about 4:15 this morning and he let me drive while he slept.  I drove about half way.  We ate at McDonald’s and then Jonathan drove the rest of the way.

We had an appointment to talk to the admissions counselor at 9:00 a.m.  We had about an hour and a half to kill when we got up there, so we drove around on the Blue Ridge Parkway.  Jonathan hadn’t been to the mountains in about eight years.  He was amazed.  It was nice there, in the area they call the High Country, but nothing can beat the Smokies.

Image

In the Smokies, the main attraction is rafting and tubing.  Up there in Banner Elk, it is skiing.

Once we arrived at Lees-McRae, everyone at the admissions office treated us like royalty.  We felt so welcome there.  This absolutely beautiful young woman showed us a video and talked with us some.  Then another beautiful girl gave us a tour.  The college is simply amazing.  Nearly all of the buildings are built of stone and the fall colors were super bright.  It is a gorgeous campus.  I liked it a lot.  And everything in the town was in walking distance.  Pretty important since I’m sure I won’t have a car.

Image

We went back to the admissions office and talked with a guy named Robert who teaches in the Performing Arts Department.  He answered a lot of our questions.  Jonathan later told me that he was gay because of the way that he sat and crossed his legs, but a lot of straight guys do that.  Anyway, it was a nice visit and it looks like we will have to go back later to audition for a scholarship.

I’m excited!

Yesterday at church I was a little down because I knew the very next day I would be visiting the place where the next four years of my life would probably take place.  My excitement made me realize that I only have about ten months left and then I will be gone.

I’ve been attending my church for nearly six years.  It seems like I’ve been going there for ever.  It seems like I’ve known Ryan, Christi, Amy, Cheryl, Scott, and Marcus for ever.  That church is all I’ve known for so long.  These friends are all I’ve known for so long.  Ten months is not enough time to say goodbye.  I’m a little afraid.

Yesterday, I was playing the piano after the evening service and Cheryl and Ryan came in there.  I was alone in the children’s church room before that.  They came in and told me about the clown troupe they want to form to go to visit kids in the hospital.  I found out that Ryan’s name is not Sunshine, but it is Happy.  She is always both of them to me.

No telling what my name would be.

Cheryl and Amy were telling me that everyone is going off to college and youth group isn’t going to be the same anymore.

Daylight
See the dew on a sunflower
And a rose that is fading
Roses wither away
Like the sunflower, I yearn to turn my face to the dawn
I am waiting for the day

There is a city near Lees-McRae called Boone.  Jonathan and I drove through there.  It was much bigger than Banner Elk and felt a little like Sanford.  Sanford itself is not special to me; it is the people that live there.

Memory
Turn your face to the moonlight
Let your memory lead you
Open up, enter in
If you find there the meaning of what happiness is
Then a new life will begin

I’ll never forget September 14, 1991.  That was when we went to Carowinds and Hank was the youth pastor.  Brian rode with me and Ryan and a friend of hers were in front of us.  Brian kept messing with Ryan’s hair.  It’s been years since I’ve seen Brian.  For all I know he could be dead.

Memory
All alone in the moonlight
I can smile at the old days
I was beautiful then
I remember a time I knew what happiness was
Let the memory live again

There were rough and sad moments too.  Like Jonathan and Christi at San-Lee Park.  I don’t want to go through that again.

Burnt out ends of smokey days
The stale cold smell of morning
A streetlamp dies – another night is over
Another day is dawning

It was a blast last September when we went to see Carman in concert.  And Marcus and I selling doughnuts at Wal-Mart.  Simple things that mean so much.

Daylight
I must wait for the sunrise
I must think of a new life
And I mustn’t give in
When the dawn comes, tonight will be a memory too
And a new day will begin

And look at me now.  Look at today.  I know I’m leaving, so why am I trying so desperately to hold on?

When the dawn comes, tonight will be a memory too
And a new day will begin

I wonder if there will be a girl up there at Lees-McRae whom I’ll think about like I think about Ryan.  In a way I don’t want it to happen, but I know that it will.

Sunlight through the trees in summer
Endless masquerading
Like a flower as the dawning is breaking
The memory is fading

Touch me
It’s so easy to leave me
All alone with a memory
Of my days in the sun
If you touch me, you’ll understand what happiness is
Look, a new day has begun

This Happy Sunshine will set.  It won’t be around forever.

Another girl always comes along.

August 23, 1993 – Monday – 4:48 p.m.

My senior year of high school started today, but I’ll get to that in a minute.

Yesterday was sort of depressing.  Henry got onto me about all this stuff.  I put up with it again.  Just one more year of him.

Church was great in the morning.  My and Ryan’s skit went great.  She looked so beautiful.  At night, we had a guest speaker named Duke.  He was super funny, but very motivating.  Jason is back and he was laughing so much.  And guess what, he forgot to edit my book, Eagle’s Path.  He didn’t even read it!  I was disappointed, but it was at least good to get it back.

School went fine.  My schedule for the first semester is Computer Applications, World Geography, Art III, and Spanish II.  The periods are 90 minutes long.  Everything went fine, but boy am I tired.

My summer is over.

The summer of ’93 is no more.

A year ago as I entered my junior year, I was practically in the same position that I am now.  Some stuff has changed, but not much.

I liked Ryan a year ago, and I still do now, only much more.  I started writing My Book of Days in November of ’92.  That doesn’t seem like a long time ago.

I just put in the CATS tape that Christi made for me.

Daylight
See the dew on a sunflower
And a rose that is fading
Roses wither away
Like the sunflower, I yearn to turn my face to the dawn
I am waiting for the day

Memory
Turn your face to the moonlight
Let your memory lead you
Open up, enter in
If you find there the meaning of what happiness is
Then a new life will begin

Memory
All alone in the moonlight
I can smile at the old days
I was beautiful then
I remember a time I knew what happiness was
Let the memory live again

Burnt out ends of smokey days
The stale cold smell of morning
A streetlamp dies – another night is over
Another day is dawning

Daylight
I must wait for the sunrise
I must think of a new life
And I mustn’t give in
When the dawn comes, tonight will be a memory too
And a new day will begin

Sunlight through the trees in summer
Endless masquerading
Like a flower as the dawning is breaking
The memory is fading

Touch me
It’s so easy to leave me
All alone with a memory
Of my days in the sun
If you touch me, you’ll understand what happiness is
Look, a new day has begun

Memory, my only connection to the past 17 years of my life.  The earlier years have faded away. But these recent years, the years to come…I’m writing them down to preserve them forever.

For anyone out there in the future reading this, please listen to me. You have to do what I say. Take one day at a time and be thankful for the simple joys in life. You can never go wrong when you take pleasure in the smile on a girl’s face.

This year is going to fly by, then another great summer, and then…boom!  I’ll be out there. I’ll live my life for Jesus and then I’ll be free!

August 4, 1993 – Wednesday – 2:21 p.m.

Yesterday mom wanted me to take Nate to the library.  I did, and then afterwards we went to the park and swang or swung, uh, well we went swinging.  It was fun.

That simple joy made my day.  After that I drove up an old dirt road that took me to the forest up above where I used to live.  Those woods were my playground in my youth.  There were two deep gullies that Danny, Peter, Kevin, and myself used to play in.  There were also these enormous rocks we would climb.

It has been six years since I played there.

Yesterday, as I stood on those large rocks, I spoke to my old playground.  I know it sounds crazy, but this is what I said:  “Thank you for letting me and my friends play here.  But the priorities of my life have changed now.  I have to move on to live a life of work and love.”

That’s what I said, isn’t that strange.  I’m weird.

But I still know those woods like the back of my hand.  I easily found my playground after six years.  It was still there and is waiting for another little group of friends to come and enjoy the deep gullies and large rocks.

I’m sure I’ll return again one day and stand on that rock and once again say, “Thank you.”