Mowgli exuded excitement when he returned from school. Well, as much excitement as a 16-year-old boy dare expose to his family. He has been working hard the past few weeks, committed to long days for a kid with ADD.
West-MEC admitted him to their General Construction program which runs two years. The first year, their junior year of high school, students attend academic classes in the morning followed by tech classes in the afternoon, reversing the schedule during the second year. Local businesses support the program which prepares the students for employment immediately upon graduation. Initially, his response to our questions about the program was the grunt. Recently, though, he shared how they constructed their own sawhorses. And yesterday’s excitement? They tore apart pallets for wood to build dog houses. What guy doesn’t love to tear apart? And a dog house? Cherry on the cake.
This is a kid who likes “to do.” He helps Mike trim palm trees. Recently he has spent a lot of time cutting up the 14-foot arm that dislodged from our sahuaro [insert sobbing emoji here]. This is the boy who trimmed the orange tree when we first moved in. Until he his teens, he was my partner in adventure.
It is good to see him feeling good about himself. Hesitant to get his driver’s license, he now drives his girlfriend to school and himself the 28 miles to West MEC. The other night he made an ice cream run, offering to pick up a treat for us. He is learning that although his brother may be a science wiz, there are other ways to succeed. Blue Boy will probably never build a doghouse out of pallets, preferring to order them online, from guys like Mowgli. We are enjoying this current of happiness.