Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The University of Alberta

I don't think I'd ever even been to Edmonton before I arrived there for school. I didn't know the area, the city or anything. I lived with my brother Greg and his family and they lived in the north east corner of the city in a neighborhood called Londonderry. He had a big house and I had a room in the basement. Because I was a transfer student from BYU I couldn't declare a major yet so I did one year of general engineering classes after which I had to be accepted into one of the engineering departments. I was planning on going into either civil engineering or mechanical engineering. School was fine as far as schools go but more interesting to me was church. I lived in the fifth ward boundaries and that was nearly an hour bus ride to get to the university which was just south of the river. Normally I would have been expected to attended the institute ward associated with the school but because it was such a long way I chose to go to the family ward with Greg and Gaylia. That turned out to be just fine with me however because they actually had a large number of young adults and they actually had a Sunday school class just for us. We had many activities and for the first time in my life I was actually popular. I loved it. It was also quite nice because it seemed that the girls outnumbered the guys.

Carol Labonte sent me this picture and with help from
her and David Butler I think I have the names of most
of the young adults in the picture.

back row left to right - Roseanne Anderson, Dave Butler, Barb Hodges, Lester Leavitt, ?,
Renee Shapcott, Wilf Gotzman
middle row - Bill Shapcott, ?, ?, Glenn Fern, Fred Leavitt
front row - Donna O'Soup, Gaylene Cooper, David Gander, Wendy Wallbank, Rob McGaskell, Lisa Shaw, Linda, Greg Rolls

One of the girls that I dated a bit was Heather MacDonald and she was quite adamant that it was MacDonald with a Mac. Definitely not one of the Mc's. That didn't last too long but I had a lot of fun that first year. Probably my first Sunday at church I met a young sixteen year old girl named Lisa Shaw. She was pretty, fun, lively and very outgoing. I loved that. Probably because it was everything I was not. It turned out that Greg was her home teacher. She was a convert to the church and being young and the only member in her family she relied heavily on her home teachers to provide the things you would normally get from your family. Things like blessings, rides to activities, someone to talk to about questions you have about doctrine, stuff like that. Her parents were divorced and that made live harder for her as well. She had been befriended by another family in the ward named Rudy and Marline VanOvermere but they had recently moved away so she had sort of adopted Greg and Gaylia as her new "church family". She came over fairly often for Sunday dinner and so we soon became good friends.

Since most of Lisa's church friends lived in fourth ward ( we lived in fifth ward) she didn't have anyone to hang out with so she started to come to many of the young adult activities with me and while I did things with all of the young adults, by the end of that first year I found myself doing more and more with Lisa. I still mostly thought of her as a friend or maybe even more of a little sister. I remember one day I was blessing the sacrament with David Butler in junior Sunday school. Lisa taught a class in junior Sunday school and while David and I were sitting at the sacrament table he leaned over to me and commented on how "hot" Lisa was. I reminded him that she was only sixteen and told him that he was crazy. Even still, it got me thinking and by the end of the year I began wondering if things could possibly work out for Lisa and I. For the summer we decided that we would split up (not that we were together) but instead of me going home for the summer Lisa went to Cardston to work in my parents store (Steadmans) and I stayed in Edmonton. As summer approached I began giving some thought to what I would do for a job. Every day my bus went past the City of Edmonton police Department and one day I got to wondering if a civilian might be able to get a job there. Something that I could do in some sort of support role. On a whim I hoped off the bus and applied for a job. On the spot I was invited in for an interview and "coincidentally" the Stores was looking for a summer student to help out. I started right away and my job included handing out supplies to all the cops. I handed out everything, spare batons, bullets, guns, badges, uniforms you name it. I went through old uniforms and sorted them out and perhaps the most annoying job I had was sorting through old numbers and putting them in order. You know those metal numbers they have pinned to their uniform? There was over a thousand of them.

It was a good job and I enjoyed it but by the end of summer I was definitely ready to go back to school. I also couldn't wait to see Lisa again.


Lynn said...

You have had the most interesting jobs!

Lisa L said...

What an old picture! Ha!ha! I wish we had more of those.

Dad said...

Good job I did not hear about that HOT bit!!