Well, now I have gone and done it. The intent was to tell how I never got a marriage proposal but now I have thought myself back into grade school. At least I made it to the sixth grade as I am now remembering Miss Kraus.
I would say the consensus is Miss Kraus was a favorite teacher. She was the Hurie School principal and sixth grade teacher as long as I can remember. She was a sturdily built unmarried woman who was probably in her forties when I thought she was elderly. She walked as if she was hurrying to an appointment - sort of bosom forward and bent at the waist.
It was in the sixth grade that Gary played the Big Bad Wolf in our production of Little Red Riding Hood. His mother made a very realistic looking wolf's head out of paper mache. I am trying to remember who Red Riding Hood was. I think it was Kathy who wore a pretty little red cape that I am sure her mother made. Some boy improvised on the "shave and a haircut" part of a song and slapped his leg while outstretching his arms as if he was in a minstrel show. I cannot remember who it was but everyone laughed and applauded. I was a crab apple tree. Plain brown paper bag with crayoned red apples attached to a broomstick. No one saw me crouched behind the screen. I did have a speaking part though. Miss Kraus scolded me and told me I better not mispronounce forbade at the play like I was at rehearsal.
Miss Kraus told us to bring an Irish potato to school for an art project. I fretted over where I was going to get a shamrock colored potato until Daddy said it was just a plain ol' potato you fried up and served with pinto beans and cornbread.
I remember coming back from lunch recess all hot and sweaty. Miss Kraus read Johnny Tremain to us as we laid our heads on our desk. It was a little cooler in the basement classrooms.
I tattled on a rowdy boy on the playground but Miss Kraus would have none of it. She said she had been watching and he had not been playing rough. It is probably my fault he did not fare well in life.
Was it sixth grade that we had a mock Presidential election and all but one boy in the class voted for Nixon?
I can still hear Miss Kraus' shoes striking each step as she hurried downstairs from a program they were having in the auditorium to tell me to quit plunking on that old piano in her room. I am also remembering something scary about the coat closet.
I remember gazing up on the hill where the high school kids were and thinking how grown up they looked. They were probably just ninth graders.
I quizzed Pam Cockrum relentlessly about changing classes and using lockers when we moved to seventh grade. I wore my locker key around my neck on a chain Grandma crocheted for me.
And here it is.
It looks like Mama gave me another home grown haircut. She sure did like my bangs cut short.
Mama came to a PTA meeting wearing a purple dress with matching earrings. She was very pretty. I still have a cookbook my Mama bought from their fundraiser. I have probably made a hundred peach cobblers from one of the recipes.
Mama could not get off work at the chicken plant to come to our sixth grade graduation ceremony. Bob Bender let Daddy take off from the Quality Market long enough to stand at the back and watch me walk across the stage.
And it was when we got to the seventh grade that I probably passed my intended in the hallways and never even noticed him.