First Teaching Assignment

It was a beautiful Southern California day! It was a wonderful time in my life. It was the year I turned twenty-one, the year I got married and the year I graduated from college. And now, I was on my way to an interview for my first teaching assignment in Pasadena, California, a well known and famous suburb of Los Angeles. I was so excited.

I arrived a full thirty minutes early, so I sat in the car fifteen minutes before taking a few deep breaths and entering the superintendent’s office. His secretary greeted me in a manner friendly enough, but her expression seemed to change when I told her my name and why I was there.

“Mr. Owen was called to a school site on an emergency. I don’t know when he’ll return. I tried to call you to reschedule, but there was no answer.”

“I left home early,” I responded.

“Well, I suggest we reschedule you because this may be a long wait.”

“I have nothing but time,” I said, “I can wait.”

I sat on a hard wooden bench and began reading some of the magazines from the table.

“It may be quite a long wait,” she said a few minutes later. “I’m just fine,” I assured her. That same conversation was repeated several times.

“I see you graduated from Jefferson High School; so did Mr. Owen. All I could say was, “Oh.” I made it sound like a question but she said nothing more. Almost two hours passed before Mr. Owen arrived back at his office. Several times during my wait, the secretary reminded me again and again, I could reschedule, but I declined.


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