Monday, September 3, 2007

My first day of school...

The year was 1955, Tennessee Ernie Ford had a hit record, Sixteen Tons, as did The Platters, You've Got the Magic Touch, and me, I was five years old, and ready for first grade.

Money was really hard to come by, and I remember my Great Aunt Annie and Uncle Rex coming to visit and buying me school shoes at Marlin's Department Store. They were little brown rounded toe t-straps with perforations in the top and I wore them with white socks with lacy tops. Egads, how do I remember THAT when I can't even remember what I had for dinner tonight??? Mother had made me a brown plaid dress, with a full short skirt, and I had sausage curls and ribbons in my hair, and of course I was beyond excited to be such a big girl and getting to go to first grade. There was no kindergarden in those days and our grade school, Booth Memorial, was being built and not finished yet, so for a few weeks, until we were able to move to the new building, school for me was in the Home Ec Building at the high school.

I still remember that day vividly, and most importantly, I remember that Donna Jones had her hair cut in a short bob, and the top of it was pulled to the side and anchored with a wide, white bow and she had this BIG lollipop, and she gave us all a lick. Oh, I thought she was just beautiful, and she had a RED lollipop, too.

Of course my Mother was mortified to think that I had licked that sucker, along with all the other first graders, but I was SO impressed. I'm sure I had butterflies, and in later years, I always tossed my cookies the first day of school, as did Ryan, and as still does Ang's Sam, but I can't remember that happening that day.

I didn't ride the bus, oh no, Mother wouldn't let me ride on that nasty old bus, she drove me to school. Overprotective??? Just a bit... a trait, I unfortunately inherited with my own children, and that even filters down to this day to the M&M's. Yeah, I won't let poor Maggie Moo play outside because I'm afraid a hawk will get her. And I'm always afraid the Munchkin will get heat stroke when she's outside, so I stand at the front door screeching like a banshee for them both to come back inside.

It was SUCH a big deal to be old enough to go to school, Daddy had already taught me to read, I knew my numbers, could write my name, but I was really bad at coloring, I had a devil of a time staying in the lines.

I also remember that room having lots of desks in it, and an upright piano and big fans to keep us cool. Hmmmm, must have been a hot fall in 1955... We had to carry our lunch, too, because there was no cafeteria in the high school. I would love to remember what Mother packed for me. We didn't eat a lot of peanut butter in those days, and knowing her, she probably got up and fried chicken for me since it was always my favorite thing.

Good memories, my early childhood. Life was so simple, then...


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