Patsy Summers didn't stand a chance- at least not with me. She may have been my Sixth Grade teacher but that didn't mean I had to like her. She was an outsider. An interloper in my elementary school. I'd been roaming the halls since my brutally shy kindergarten days. I knew everyone and everything there was to know about JLA. She was invading my territory and I was not a fan.
The previous year had been particularly rough and I was desperate to find my footing again. There had ALWAYS been just two sixth grade teachers but our numbers were growing and another class had to be added. I have no idea where they found Mrs. Summers and I didn't really care to know. I was beyond infuriated that I didn't get assigned to Mrs. Stringer's class. She was the nicest teacher in the entire red brick building and my little brother was her son's best friend so I should have had an in. It wasn't FAIR!
Mrs. Summers was short and stout with glossy back hair that poofed out and reached just past her ears. I found her sing-song voice patronizing and the way she broke down instructions in a million and one steps was aggravating. How stupid did she think we were? I didn't care that she'd been teaching kindergarten for the past ten years. It wasn't my fault that she was told to teach sixth grade or be unemployed. I was an intolerant eleven year old girl just trying to survive.
On the final day of my elementary school career, at the picnic after graduation, I made an announcement. I told my life long friends we were moving seven hundred and ninety nine miles away to where the wind comes sweeping down the plains and the wavin' wheat can sure smell sweet when the wind comes right behind the rain.
Looking back now, I realize we had much in common. We were both just trying to survive as we navigated our way through unknown territory.
I never did see Mrs. Summers again but I wish I could tell her thank you.