Safety

It was a spring day in grade four class, and we went out on a field trip.  We took public transit there and back.  On our way back to school, I remember talking to my friends and classmates, Timmy and Kim.

The doors opened at our stop, but because Timmy and Kim were not getting off, I assumed that it was not the stop I was suppose to disembark.  The three of us stayed on that streetcar until it got emptier and emptier.

Finally, the streetcar pulled into a subway station and I got scared.  Nobody else from our school was on the streetcar anymore.  Everybody was leaving the streetcar, and the three of us were obviously lost.

We walked around for several minutes.  I’m not sure what we said to each other.  Suddenly, a teacher yelled our names in the distance.  She was very upset, and screamed at us for getting lost.

I didn’t think it was my fault.  I’m legally blind, and I was just staying with people I recognized.  Isn’t that the best way to stay safe?

The three of us along with the teacher took a taxi home.  I thought everything would be OK, but when we got back to school, the teacher told us that the taxi was nine dollars and that each of us would be responsible for three dollars each.

At this point, I was very scared.  How was I suppose to come up with $3?  Why wasn’t the teacher at least chipping into the fare?

And what would my parents think of I tell them this story?  Would I be punished even further?

I ended up being upset all day.  I didn’t tell anybody else the story.  When my allowance was given to me a week later, I took $3 (out of the $5 total) and gave it to the teacher.

As I reflect back upon the situation, I think very poorly of that teacher.  Could a teacher not afford $9 to pay for a taxi on behalf of three students who got lost?  Couldn’t there at least be a follow-up conversation about the situation and help us understand what happened so not to repeat the same mistakes?

It seems that nothing was said about it anymore.  Everything was swept under the rug as if nothing happened.  I was just out $3 and felt horrible.

This situation has come to my mind many times over the years.  I don’t know why I remember this, and why it comes up over and over in my mind.  What possible benefit could this situation provide for me in my life?