54/365 – people to thank who have had an impact on me. Most of us have early memories but often I wonder if those memories are actually our own or a relative’s passed on to us and then somehow become our history believed to be a part of our own thought process. I’ve seen a picture of my first day at kindergarten standing in front of the house with a frown and a lunchkit in my hand. For the longest time, I thought I “remembered” that moment but in fact it is my mom’s memory preserved for her days of reminiscing through her photo albums. It is not my own memory as I don’t remember that moment in time. However, I do remember my first day of kindergarten – I was dropped off by my mom at Queen Elizabeth Elementary in Queensborough and I was all tears. I stood in the corner and cried and cried. Ms Eisner came up to me and I burst out into more tears as I could see my mom in the window looking at me with worry. I wasn’t having any of this woman’s pleasantries. I wasn’t interested in her tables of activities. I wasn’t interested in her holding my hand and patting my shoulder. I wasn’t interested in meeting any of the other early arrivers. I wasn’t having any of this. I was going to stand there and cry until my mother came in and got me. I’m sure that in the next few moments Ms Eisner asked my mom to leave and while that was happening, she came by. Kim! Perhaps she was sent by Ms Eisner but fellow kindergartener, blonde kindergartener, pretty kindergartener Kim came up to me. She asked me if I wanted to thread beads. I was stunned. I went over to the table – my fear of kindergarten fast fleeting. I was double-teamed: pretty First Nations Jackie was there and handed me large beads while she had the leather thread ready. Kim showed me what to do. I just watched these two and my mom was a distant memory. I’m sure we would have made the most ideal poster for multicultural public school education if anyone would have taken a photo at that moment (now why wasn’t this your picture mom??!!) 🙂 I have no recall of anything else about Kindergarten nor of grade 1 and 2 (as we moved to Richmond after that) but I do remember both Jackie and Kim at the community swimming pool and being my earliest friends. Yes, I was probably having a school boy crush on both of them but whether they were put up to it through Ms Eisner or through the kindness of their hearts – these girls befriended me on that first day, and I remain forever grateful. My first day of Kindergarten could have been horrible but because of those two girls, I have an indelible memory that I look back upon in fondness. I will never meet you in my lifetime Kim and Jackie but I always think of you and what you did for me! I string a bead each for you!