Last week, I spent a few days in the old hometown helping with a few parental errands.

While there, the high school football team headed south to Carthage, Texas to face a rough opponent in the playoffs. After much success this fall, the De Kalb Bears’ season came to an end.

I’m told the young men that make up this team are talented on-and-off the field, and next year will surely be a great assembly of talent and muscle.

I didn’t get to go to the game, but I eased by the school as the buses returned from the long trip. The parents, players, coaches and others were understandably moving slower and appeared to be sad it was over, and I don’t blame them. But something else caught my eye.

It was the man who stayed after everyone had emptied out of the buses. The one who swept up after they had all gone home.

I don’t know who he was, whether he was paid to stay and do it or what. But it was an especially unique thing to see after midnight in my little hometown.

By the time he was finished, it felt like only three people were awake at that time — the town’s night watchman, the bus driver and me.