... not her favorite thing
I feel like skipping over my younger memories and becoming a fifth grader at the Roosevelt school.
I didn't have to stay back in third grade. I got tutored with four other children and we learned how to pay attention and took some tests on how to behave. I was promoted to fourth grade as well as the other four children. We all did so well by late spring we graduated to the fifth grade.
What happiness it was for all of us to begin fifth grade in the fall. The girls had sewing and the boys went to manual traingin. Now this was all extra on top of studies and homework.
I wanted to take violin lessons from Miss Wilson, plus see if I could go into the small orchestra. I could read music since I had been playing piano in the second, third and fourth grades. My grandfather had a violin in the attic. My best friend played the violin and was in the fifth grade orchestra. Of course, I first had to learn to play the violin and soon started taking lessons from Miss Wilson, who said if I practiced enough I could be in the small orchestra in the seventh grade.
My mother thought I should go to dancing school and take ballroom dancing. Well, I was taller than all the boys, way too shy and scared of my own shadow. Mrs. MacAnaney had a class in Corinthian Hall on Franklin Street. There was a stage for plays, a kitchen for entertaining and dressing rooms. Males on one side of the stage, females on the other, a hall behind and more dressing rooms. Well, it was just dandy!
Mrs. MacAnaney made sure she had an even number of boys and girls, no wallflowers allowed.
Ballroom dancing, well, I will see if I can explain it. The girls would come out on the dance floor and form a circle holding hands. The boys would come out and form a circle about two feet behind them. The piano player would start up, the girls holding hands, would go around to the left, the boys would hold hands and go around to the right. When the music stopped your partner was the one in back of you. The boy would bow to the girl and she would courtesy to him. They became partners. I was always taller than all my partners.
Before class started there was always gossip. The big topic with the girls in their dressing room was did Mrs. MacAnaney wear a bra? She looked beautiful in her long white dinner dress and very graceful.
The boys wore navy blue Eton suits, white shirts and colored ties. The girls were, of course, all dressed up.
After you had a partner the dance lesson started. My dad was very musical and knew how to do regular ballroom dancing. I practiced during the week with him. Ho hum! It wasn't easy!
July 1, 2005