The old guy in the back
Because of the time I spent in the service I started college late. In fact, because I didnt' fly to Charlotte before I got out of the Marines I started college a year later than I should have. I was 23 when I started taking classes at Central Piedmont Community College.
I spent about three years there as a part-time student and then spent three more years at UNC-Charlotte. Eventually I walked away with an English degree. The whole time I was in school I was older than most everyone else in my classes. Especially at the university.
I remember sitting in poetry writing class one day talking to a girl that I had a crush on. I believe she was a junior and this was my first year at the university. She asked me my age and I told her that I was 27. She looked astonished. Her surprise added a little color to her face and she was even cuter. She then said, still a little shocked, "No way! I knew you were older, Ed, but I had no idea you were that old."
She was then embarrassed by her surprise but it was all good. I kidded her about it and then it was forgotten. I wish I could remember her name. She was my partner in a letter writing project we did in class. Every week we would alternate exchanging letters in class. It was a fun project and similar to email exchanges since the tone of the letters was casual. I wrote a lot about trains. The tracks that run from Charlotte to Raleigh are near the university and you could hear them engines whistle all day. It made the place feel more rural than it was.