Of siblings and schools

Holy Ghost Catholic Parish School in Dubuque, Iowa

Image via Wikipedia

As a first grader at St John’s Elementary School, I remember clearly  how impressed I was by the speed and sound of hundreds of kids as they came thundering down the stairs at the end of the day. The metal edging on the steps clanged as students’ shoes met the stairs, drowning out Sr. Mary Davidica’s warning of “NO Running!” Scores of bodies whizzed by me in a blur, and before you could say “saddle shoes”, the school was empty and quiet.

It was my older sister Margie I was waiting for outside my first grade classroom; she was going to pick me up and walk home with me. Our school didn’t  have buses to transport kids – we all had to walk, whether our homes were near or far; ours was far. There were 10 city blocks between home and St John’s, with a very large intersection across a busy  highway at about the halfway point. At 5 years old I had not yet been granted permission to cross 4 lanes of busy city traffic, even with a light, by myself. Margie, at 7 years old, was my guide and protector, at least at the beginning of the first grade year.

Margie was my hero all of my life in Seattle. She had red hair and freckles, was very smart, could play the piano and sang beautifully. We shared a bedroom, a small doll collection, and short tempers. As sisters we fought constantly, and drove my Mom crazy. But as friends, we were shirt-and-pants, doing virtually everything together until Margie left St John’s for highschool.

Still, there were plenty of years before she went on to highschool for sibling rivalry to reign supreme. But that is another blog post.

One thought on “Of siblings and schools

  1. As an elementary teacher, a sister, and a mom…I can relate to your “Of Siblings and Schools” post oh so well!

    The teacher in me still yearns for those ‘old school’ schools, you know- where the woodwork is artwork and the floorboards are wide planks of squeeky timber. I appreciate all the nuance of the modern schools, but I still reminisce about those ‘old schools’

    The sister in me can share way too many stories of sibling rivalry. My sister could share just as many. Happy to have outgrown that; sadly it took us too long to become the good friends we are now.

    The mom in me? Just like all moms,(and dads), I find life’s greatest pleasure in watching my now grown children become friends!

    Thyrkas, Thanks for the trip down memory lane 😀

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