For the past two weeks, one of my students has had the privilege of being walked to school every morning by her abuelo who was visiting from Jalos, México. They arrived at school each day as I was arriving. I watched them talking and walking as I pulled up into my parking spot and walked to my room. What a beautiful sight it was to behold. There was so much happiness and pride in my student's face and so much love, pride and kindness in her abuelo's face. I caught little fragments of their conversations here and there. My student was telling her abuelo about all of the things we would be doing and he would tell her to behave, learn and listen to the teacher. I wanted to take a picture of them but I just thought it would be rude and it would be invading their private time together.
My student didn't introduce me to her abuelo. He didn't introduce himself to me either. I went up to him on the third day of their walking to school and introduced myself. The abuelo was really quite shy. He seemed embarrassed to shake my hand but did smile when I greeted him. On the next day, I asked him to come in and see our classroom. I told my student to take her abuelo to her desk and to show him her work on the walls. Her abuelo didn't want to come in though. I was persistent but he politely smiled and waved and went back home. I got the impression that my student's abuelo didn't feel that it was his place to come into my room. I also felt like I need to drop the issue of pestering him to come inside.
My student's abuelo returned to Mexico this past weekend. He never came in the room and never said more than hello to me. There will be no more morning walks to school for me to witness. I wish I could have captured those walks on film to capture the two of them enjoying each other's company. I am going to miss coming to school and starting off my day seeing those two together.