February 4, 2012

Fun Surprise

Last night was bowling night for the league I'm in with my friends. Most of us aren't very good, but it's a great excuse to get together for some laughs and a few beers.

He's not so little anymore!
In the middle of our second game, one of the employees walked over with a plate of food. I immediately recognized him, but I couldn't remember how. On his way back, I stopped him and said, "I know you from somewhere."

Without hesitation, he responded, "PALS!"

PALS is a before and after school program at one of the elementary schools where I grew up. I worked there with my best friends in high school and over the summer in college. It was a great job because we pretty much spent the entire day playing with kids... crafts, games, coloring, playing on the playground... it was totally worth the crappy pay.

Ryan, the guy I ran into, was not a coworker, though. He was one of about 60 kids. Twelve years ago, I might add.

"Oh my God!" I exclaimed, "I can't believe you remember me from PALS!"

"Of course!" he laughed, "You were my favorite!"

And then he proceeded to rattle off memories of me picking him up all the time and telling him how adorable he was for using big words despite his young age. Doesn't that sound just like me?!?!

We played a few rounds of "Do you remember so-and-so?" and took turns pulling up pictures on our iPhones (it's moments like this that make me love technology). And then we took a picture to send to his sister, who also remembers me. She was my favorite coloring buddy back in the day.

And I sent one to my best friend, Ashley, who used to work with me at PALS. After seeing how grown he is, she immediately responded with, "Damn, we're old!" hahaha

I still can't believe this now 19 year-old remembers playing with me after school each day back when he was only 6 and 7. It was so heart-warming. You just never know the impact you can make on someone.

As it turns out, Ryan's mom is a teacher in one of the school districts where I currently work. Upon hearing the name of the school, my friend Brian (our league captain) turned around and instantly knew I was talking to the son of his elementary school teacher. Of course, this led to more pictures and texting to Ryan's mom, who remembered Brian and his siblings.

It's a small world, ya'll!

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