For our community, high school graduation time is a city-wide celebration, even for those who do not have children or relatives among the graduates. All of us take pride in the accomplishments of our graduates, for we know that they represent the future leaders of our community and our world, and that all of us have played some small role, even indirectly, in their nurturing and development from young children to the adults they are today.
Seeing the balloons and other signs of graduation-related celebrations around East Boston brings a smile to our faces, for they evoke the memories from the time when we were high school grads.
For the parents of the grads, who will be watching their sons and daughters proceed to the podium to receive their diplomas, the moment will be bittersweet. We are reminded of the words from that song from Fiddler on the Roof:
Where is the little girl I carried?
Where is the little boy at play?
I don’t remember getting older,
When did they?
Thinking about the cross-currents of time and space shared by the previous classes of East Boston High School and 2016, we realize that no doubt it is inconceivable for the members of the Class of 2016 even to imagine coming together for their 25th or 50th reunion.
However, if any members of the Class of 2016 feel that the 2031 or 2066 are a long, long way away, we do have one piece of advice to offer all of the members of the class: “Carpe diem” — seize the day. Unlike a sports event, life does not offer any time-outs. The clock keeps ticking — “Time and tide wait for no man,” as the poet said — and we must strive to do the best we can every day of our lives. Fifty years from now, we can assure all of the graduates that none of them will want to look back 50 years and think, “What might have been…”
We offer our congratulations to the members of the Class of 2016 and their families. We know we join with the entire East Boston community in wishing them a joyous graduation day and the best of luck in the years ahead.