I know that not everyone is fond of their high school years. Cliquish behavior can alienate and even anger the high school student feeling left out or bullied. Fortunately for me, my high school experience was not like that. Northwestern was for 7-12 grades in four towns, Norfolk being one of them. My graduating class from these four towns was 124, not exactly tiny but small enough to be intimate. We weren’t perfect, but we were relatively free from cliques in comparison to other classes and other schools.
Leslie McCormick, now Leslie Melody, is a classmate of mine that lived near the American Discovery Trail. She came out to day hike with us from Inspiration Point to Walnut Creek, a scenic section of trail that went from rolling hills to the shores of reservoirs to ridge walking over steep terrain.
Leslie enjoyed hiking, but she was not accustomed to the type of mileages that thru-hikers put in. Also, the most challenging part of the hike came at the end of the day. I had to check myself as I tended to get ahead of her towards the end. Nevertheless shes was a thoroughly buoyant spirit throughout, providing much welcome company on the breaking in portion of our journey when we also found the going challenging.
This may not seem like kindness to you but Leslie knew this would be challenging for her and she joined us anyways. The essence of kindness is to risk a little something of yourself, your comfort, your security maybe, even your safety, because you care about someone else.