‘P’ is for Prep
“Ah, you must be Ms. Collins,” a tall, balding man met me, grasping my hand tightly.
“Hi… err, are you Mr. Jenkins?” I asked. His hand was still shaking mine. He moved to shake my mom and dad’s hands too.
“Yes, yes. Come in,” he motioned enthusiastically to his office door. We followed him in.
The office was big, and the halls which covered the walls were filled with books. It strongly smelled of peppermint. Mr. Jenkins motioned for us to sit on the three empty seats in front of his large desk.
We sat, and Mr. Jenkins got right down to business. “So, let’s get down to business, shall we?”
My mom and dad nodded fervently by my side, smiles stretched across their faces. Mr. Jenkins smiled back and opened a file that was lying on his desk. He sifted through the papers, finally finding the one he was looking for.
“This is just a student contract each student signs,” he handed it to me, along with a pen. I signed it and handed the paper back to me.
“Excellent. Now, you will want Erin to start right away, am I right?”
My parents nodded.
“Of course,” he said politely. “Now, I just need you two to sign this paper so that Mia’s scholarship will be processed.”
They signed it. Then, Mr. Jenkins gave us a tour of the school. It was big, and old-looking. The halls were covered with trophies and posters of various clubs and associations. It was all quite intimidating. Just the walls gave off an aura of seriousness.
As we came to the end of our tour, Mr. Jenkins gave me my locker number and combination, along with my uniform. “I look forward to seeing you on Monday, Mia.” He smiled brightly at my parents and me as we walked out of the building.
We walked to our car and made our way to car, pulling away from the school. As we made our way back to our Greenwich Village apartment, I couldn’t help but feel nervous at the thought of starting a new school. My parents and I had just moved to New York from Massachusetts, and they immediately insisted on enrolling me in one of the most prestigious Manhattan high schools.
I’m not joking. Practically everyone who goes to NMPS (Niccolo Machiavelli Preparatory School) ends up going to some Ivy League college. I really would have been happy just going to a regular high school, but my parents insisted. They always wanted me to have the best possible opportunities, even if we couldn’t quite afford them.
Dad had just gotten a job offer he couldn’t turn down, which was why we left Massachusetts. He was now the co-owner of Bing, a restaurant in Midtown Manhattan. It was one of the most exclusive restaurants in all of Manhattan. His best friend offered him the job and voila, he hoisted us off the big bad city.
Not that I was angry, I was glad Dad got a good job and got to be with his best friend, but I just felt so out of place. I mean, in Massachusetts I had friends, and a life. But now I had to start all over. We lived in a pretty small town, and that’s the way I liked it. Mom and Dad were thrilled to be back to their birthplace though- they both grew up in the City.
My mom wasn’t too sad we left. That’s one of the perks of being an artist; you can live anywhere and still work. That’s what my mom is- and artist. She’s pretty good too, but not the most reliable person when it comes to finishing pieces.