Patrick's sister Kelly graduated today. The weather held out, and Sterling held the event outside. It was a little warm, and the bleacher benches were uncomfortable, but I suffered through it just like my family suffered through for me. I had absolutely no hand in raising this wonderful young woman, but when Kelly's name was called (and she got announced with scholastic honors!) I felt as proud as any sister.
After the Throwing of the Caps, we hunted her down and posed for a few pictures before we slithered out of the crowd. Kelly headed inside and I followed. A few more pictures later and we said goodbye. Kelly had to pick up her diploma and then she had to decide if she was going to go to project graduation or not. Project graduation is a thing that Sterling does where they set up some kind of mini field trip for the seniors after graduation to have some last-minute memorable fun with their friends until rather early morning (I think mine went until 3 AM). It was strange being back inside the school that I was in for four years, and have not seen four years.
It still smelled the same.
On the way home, I turned to Patrick and said, "So your little sister has graduated high school." To which he said, "Yeah, I need to make a will." He feels old now, but he'll get over it. Kelly is five years younger than him, and four years younger than me. She goes away to a semi-local college next fall, and I'll miss her. Until then, I have already told her that I will commandeer as much of her summer as I can. I have to fill my Kellymeter before she leaves.
My friend Brandon's sister graduated today, as well as a guy that I worked with at Pizza Hut (from which I am now officially gone). I tried to find them, but it was very crowded.
So congratulations Sterling class of 2011, the 50th commencement of Sterling High School. They called them "the golden class."