My abode in Denver:
This afternoon I spoke to a large crowd at a fundraiser for Sewall child Development Center of Denver. Every now and then I’ll have people I know in the audience at these things. This time, I had my mother’s first cousin Carolyn, who brought me some pictures of our life back in Cairo, Georgia long ago.
The talk went pretty well, and we had some good questions after, including a few from a militant teacher who didn’t seem to thrilled with my treatment of my own teachers back at Amherst High. But what did she know? I figured she was sulky because some student sent her a Reversible Ursula, and she didn’t want to own up to it.
After my talk I went back to Sewall to see the facility, the tykes, and the teachers.
I came away with a few impressions:
The first thing that struck me was that the look of autism that I’ve commented on was visible in children, too. So I don’t just see it in adults. Actually, the similarity between the expressions on some of those tykes and the expressions in my own childhood photos was striking.
The next thing that hit me was how similar the behavior of those kids was to my own behavior, at that long-ago age. I sat and watched them, and remembered my own time at the Mulberry Tree School, when I was the size of today’s tykes. I even bounced and flapped my wings for a few of them. They liked that.
I watched one class of tykes dance, and I heard another bunch sing. All in all, it was a memorable and satisfying visit. Two tykes mistook me for a zoo animal and hugged me, and I almost squashed another one when I bounced in time to another tyke.
Here’s a link to Sewall’s Facebook page.
If the teachers and staff of that place are representative of the changes in tyke management since my Mulberry Tree days, things have gotten a lot better.
After leaving Sewall I walked through downtown Denver. After feeding at the Cheesecake Factory I decided to take the light rail 9 miles back to my hotel. Now, that was a treat. The rail cars are made by Siemens, and they run on modern welded rail set on concrete ties with good stone ballasting. It’s a smooth ride, and on the open stretches, they outran the cars on I-25.
On the way out of town we passed a large Union Pacific rail yard, with a line of old locomotives. Some were covered in very nice graffiti. I rode through three tunnels on the trip, with no sign of residents in any of them. I wonder where Denver’s tunnel people live? It was nothing like New York, where there are obvious signs of colonization everywhere the track descends below the street. Maybe they don’t have tunnel people in Denver.
Here's the street in Denver this afternoon:
Thursday, May 7, 2009
My abode in Denver: