This is the story of some of my many teachers and in particular a Mrs. Moore that taught me in pry 2.
Growing up was fun.
We never quite got what we wanted, however we also never lacked.
We had in mighty abundance parental love and care shown by both parents, but which was easily accessible from my Mum.
Where we wanted Bata / Cortina shoes, we got leather sandals made by shoe makers around either the house or the church; where we wanted to go to Christmas shows to see Santa, we got to go to church to say Mass.
On that note therefore, when it was time for me to start school.
The idea of going to a nursery was totally out of it.
My Mum was a primary school teacher so I started by following her to school back then. Same school she taught was where I was bundled to do ‘jeleosimi’.
However, I was in a totally different class – Not exactly strange class though as I was in the class being taught by a relative and equally church member in the person of Mrs Sekoni aka Mama Dotun. To say I was utterly pampered is to say the least.
Mama Dotun would spoil me with meals after meals once it was break time and on closure I would follow my Mum back home.
Daddy was always the one dropping us off back then.
I did that schedule for a whole academic year then I entered the same Primary School with my late sister – St Patrick’s Primary School, Yaba – Lagos.
The lucky trend continued as I found myself in the class of Mrs Sanwo; yet another church member. This time I was even saddled with a responsibility as I was made the class captain right in pry 1.
I honestly can’t remember if it was my prowess or closeness to the teacher that led to this. I zoomed through the session without trouble or rancour and got promoted to pry 2.
My experience in pry 2 was one I never quite bargained for.
I found myself in the class of Mrs Moore (a tough nut to crack) – I used to promise myself based on this particular experience that I surely would also aspire to be a teacher so I could come across my former pry 2 teacher’s grand children and also cane / punish them same way she did to me.
I was thoroughly beaten blue black by this woman. She never sparred the rod for me.
Her sight filled me with trepidation.
Ahhhhh, the fear of Mrs Moore was the beginning of wisdom for me.
One major incident I can never forget was her warnings to me severally due to my constant forgetfulness. I had consistently left a particular work book at home.
On a fateful day, Dad had dropped me and my late sis that early morning and the moment I got down from the car I knew I was in for another round of spanking. I had once again forgotten my work book at home.
I started trembling at the thought of what this woman was going to do to me till my father came to pick me.
I had to make a decision what to do.
Make bold and go into the class or bolt away – Bolt to where I wondered ?
Anyway, I reached a decision as quickly as I watched my Dad’s tail end disappear through the school gate.
I also bolted in that direction – Every morning I’d gotten so used to the route we followed to school. We picked my former ‘jelesimi’ school teacher and dropped her and my Mum at their school and then head towards my father’s office passing further down to get to our own school.
He drops us off and heads back to his 12 floors very tall office building.
I walked out of the school gate in opposite direction of every student coming to school that morning; I ran – Running as fast as my little legs could take me; as I did all these I wept, shivering as I was doing so; crying like there was no tomorrow; totally confused by my actions.
I walked, ran, wept and cried along the same route we had followed in my Dad’s car that morning – Doing so in the reverse format and heading to my Mum’s school.
I knew she would understand my predicament more than my father: Ahhhhhh, I couldn’t imagine facing him to tell him I forgot my books at home.
My punishment from him would make my teacher’s look like child’s play.
Yes, I knew my Mum would protect me; I knew she was a lot more understanding.
How long it took me to get to her school I never can imagine because by the time I did get there every student headed for school that day was already on their desk. I entered my mother’s classroom.
Crying out loud by now – Gutted, shaken and broken.
Looking back: I know I scared her. Yes you could see it from the way she jumped up from her table “What is the problem ?”
She cried out while also quickly calling on her colleagues to come to her aid.
They all surrounded me in the few seconds I had spent with them.
An agreement was also quickly reached – My Mum was to take me to my Dad’s office – Yeeeeeee, the same place I was trying to avoid. Anyway sha, at least Mum was going to be there also.
We strolled out into the streets and boarded a bus which took us to the nearest bus stop to my father’s office.
He worked on the 11th floor and we took the lift to his top floor office. We were told he was in a meeting. Sensing the urgency, his support staff went in to call him out his wife and son were around.
Quickly he too was out – Mum reeled out the story to him and they both decided to take me back to school that day.
By this time I was totally flat and out – Deflated; ashamed and very remorseful.
I wondered to myself why I had to take my parents through this ordeal and why I also had to embarrass my own self too.
Back in school: If you ask me what they said to my teacher – I honestly don’t know and they never raised their voice to her too but whatever it was sure worked cos she never ever laid her hands on me again.
This was in 1975.
To think I’ve still not come across anybody bearing that surname till date – A MOORE grandchild.
Happy Teacher’s Day !
@ O’Shine ORIGINAL