What is the story of your life that no one knows about?
When I was 11 years old I went for my first day at Secondary School (you go from 11 - 16 years old in the the UK)
As I past the group of shops that lined up against the side-walk near my home I was hastily approached by a young boy of 13 years old. He animatedly said ‘quickly quickly have you got 20p I need it for the bus’. I saw a bus coming.
I handed him the 20p from my £2 for my lunch money (meals cost £1.60p with 40p enough for a drink) so he could catch the bus.
He turned around and shot into the fish and chip machine and rifled the coin into the slot machine to carry on playing Arcade roulette.
I didn’t really understand what that feeling was at that moment that ran through me. It was pain. My innocence had been taken advantage of.
I kept walking.
It was my first day going to a ‘big school’ and I was walking there myself. The busy bees that buzzed around me now seemed scary and more akin to hornet’s nests. But onward I kept walking.
I made it to the school gate and began to trot it. Little old Deepak. His first day as I skinny little boy in school. A second boy approached me this time. He was a little bigger than the first. He looked me square in the face.
It was a school with 99% white children. I guess I must have stuck out being a solo 11 year old brown boy trotting through the gates :).
‘Give me your lunch money or I’ll punch you in the face’. I silently reached into my pocket and handed him my £1.60.
‘Good’ he said promptly and left.
My eyes welled up with tears as I wanted to burst out crying. I wiped my eyes like something had got into them on that dreary September day and. Kept walking.
I’ll always remember my first day at school.
Evelyns Secondary School (now closed down) was one of the worst performing schools in the UK with an intake policy that accepted delinquents, those with learning disabilities and kids that had been ‘expelled’ or ‘banned’ from other schools.
It has since shut down.
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