The Teacher We Never Forget

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Memoir  |  House: Booksie Classic
We all have one, a teacher we remember.

Submitted: October 08, 2014

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Submitted: October 08, 2014



The Teacher We Remember.

I remember sitting in the classroom at school, I was maybe ten years old, looking out across the bay, daydreaming. I was never interested in Math, and even less in Latin, but I was interested in the sea and all those places beyond the water’s edge. Ms. Cullen, a round faced, kindly teacher who wore her hair short, told a story how Columbus rediscovered the ‘New World’, she also said I shouldn’t stare out the window so much. Adventure was everywhere, but the greatest adventure was running to catch the school bus and taking the ride down the Sound of Mull on our half hour trip to Craignure, where I boarded the ferry, which sailed to Oban, on the mainland, heading for school.

While other kids sat in the warmth of the ferry’s canteen during those blustery winter morning journeys, with threatening rain clouds low over the waters, I stood on the bow, letting the sharpness of the wind crisp my ears until they felt like ice packs on the side of my head. Hurting so much I entered the classroom crying with pain, tears streaming down my face. Ms. Cullen would shake her head, grab my hand and pull me down the corridor to the school’s boiler room. ‘Read this,’ she’d say…thrusting an adventure book into my hand…‘come back to class when you’ve thawed out,’ but never left without first handing me a chocolate bar and offering a soft palm across my floppy scalp. I was a ridiculous kid. She said that, too, with the hugest, most forgiving smile on her face.

I learned, many years later, now living in California, that Ms. Cullen is still teaching, encouraging her hapless students to become better. How we pupils loved her, never wanting to leave her class, and me never wanting to be anything but the boy to whom she first gave a chocolate bar for my stupidity.

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