This came to mind while I was conversing with someone about what the term “Book Bag” means. Back when I was in grammar school, Catholic Grammar School for that matter, each child went out and got a new book bag at the beginning of every school year.
These book bags were heavy leather satchels. They never were made from synthetic materials. They smelled like a shoe store. They had a handle but never a shoulder strap. Inside the bag there were usually a couple dividers. After getting all our books for the year our book bags would bulge from the content. The books were often pretty heavy for the pre-teen and I swear that one of my arms are longer today because of it considering I had a one mile walk to school each day. Setting the book bag down when got to your class was a great relief.
I wonder if kids today have any sort of the same relationship with their back-packs they use today. One would think you should have some sort of attachment to something that resides on ones back like a parasite.
By the time I got into the eighth grade many of us cooler kids graduated to a square brief case, but it was rare that a brief case would last an entire year. The old book bag could sometimes last two years, but they did wear out. Straps would break, handles would break; however they were tough bags and could take a lot of punishment.
It was sad to see an old friend end up in the trash, but that sentiment was quickly forgotten when the new book bag smell hit me. I had a new friend and it was time to move forward.