April 6, 2014

Sharing Memories Week 14: Grade 9 - Love it or Hate it?

Me at Gr. 9 Initiation Day
Sharing Memories is a series of weekly prompts to help all genealogists (including me!) with writing up memories of our ancestors and our childhood. 

We all love to find a diary or letters written by great grandma or grandpa where they talk about their lives and share their memories. Think how excited one of your descendants will be to read about your memories and your stories! These stories will be lost after a few generations unless we preserve them. And what better way than in a weekly themed post. 

This week's prompt is "Grade 9". Did you love it or hate it? Did you walk to High School or take a bus? How did you feel going into Grade 9 - were you scared or excited?

We had Initiation Day in my High School. It was horrible. We Grade niners had to dress as Romans in old bedsheets to look like togas. We had to fashion crowns of ivy to wear on our hands too. We were slaves for the day and had to carry books for several students at once. We had to use our noses to roll marbles up the cement incline to the front door of the school and at lunch time we had to kneel on the floor under the lunch tables so the older students could use our backs as a foot rest. 

The worst was the shaving creme they squirted into our faces and mouths. Initiation lasted the entire day and it really wasn't any fun at all. I had my photo taken and put in the local paper while I was rushing down the hallway. 

Grade 9 was a bit of a blur for me. My father died that year on Christmas Day so from January on I really don't remember much of what went on in school. I was very shy and it was all my teachers could do to get a word out of me. 

My favourite teacher was Mr. Parrott. He taught English and I thought he was wonderful. He took an interest and tried to coax me to answer questions in class. He told my mother that I knew the answers but wouldn't put my hand up to volunteer them. Eventually he was able to get me to come out of my shell and start enjoying and participating in class.

I actually enjoyed High School and all the new things I was learning. I signed up for Music class and learned to play French Horn. As usual I joined the school choir. I also joined the school newsletter as a reporter/writer (yep I loved to write even back then!) 

I loved taking part in all of these activities but then my mother said I had to get an after-school and weekend job. The extra-curricular went out the window as I could not do both. I worked at our local library every day after school (4 pm - 6 pm), two evenings a week (7pm - 9pm) and all day Saturday. It wasn't easy to keep up with my school work and get good grades with all the hours spent working but somehow I managed. But I sure missed my after school activities.

 


1 comment:

Yvonne Demoskoff said...

When I started Grade 9, I was relieved to hear there wouldn't be initiation. The reason: our school was newly built and had just opened, so it was decided to keep it clean and free from all the mess that initiation can cause. I feel so badly for you, Lorine, about the shaving cream business. I think today something like that might be considered assault.