Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Salute to a Doll

I didn't have any toy nor a doll, which I dreamed to have. My early childhood was during WWII, a time of survival only.
But I remember a special event in my life, related to a beautiful doll.
It was my first day of school, 1940 or 1942. My mother had prepared a school bag out of her old navy-colored coat. My father had given me a copybook, pencil and eraser. With all the excitement of a school bag and a blue uniform, I held my mother's hand and left home cheerfully.
As we approached the school, I started to tremble. Something was choking me,a feeling of separation from my mother.
At the door of KG, the teacher embraced me, held my hand, and said, "I'm Miss Shoushan, and you are very beautiful, a very nice girl. Come in."
My mother let go my hand and started to walk away, with tears in her eyes. I cried, too, and tried to run after her.
But Miss Shoushan took me in her arms, kissed me, and handed me a beautiful doll. She had big blue eyes, curly brown hair, and was dressed in pink.
I wiped my tears.
I didn't look for my mother any more. She had gone.
"She may sit by you in the class," said the teacher.
And that was it.
The doll sitting by me had opened the door to my love of education.
Now, many years later, I feel grateful to a teacher, who, most probably without the required credentials of nowadays, knew the simplest way to guide her students toward a love of education.
I say today, "Salute to a doll."
written by Jeanette Kassouny

An educator and writer of Armenian descent, Jeanette Kassouny is a dedicated member of "Tea and Tales" a writing class taught by Fjaere Mooney and offered by the Programs for Older Adults, North Hollywood Community Adult School, at Valley Village Senior Apartments.

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