Do you remember your first day of school?
I do. I remember being in a room full of kids with this really tall lady and feeling like everyone else knew each other – like I was the only “stranger” in the room.
Why are there quotation marks around the word “stranger”? Because it was my word for the day.
Just as I was getting on the school bus that morning my mother bent down and said to me, “don’t talk to any strangers, okay?” Which is great advice when it’s not your first day of school – I’m talking kindergarten here, by the way – so technically EVERYONE was a stranger.
I remember quite clearly standing around a table with a herd of other little kids as we all got to paint a picture of how we felt that day. At the time I was obsessed with owning my own kitten so I painted a blue me with Medusa-like brown hair, holding a black kitten. My choice of colours was probably later interpreted as something like: future manic depressive.
As I focused on my painting I remember noticing how all the other little boys and girls at my table were talking to each other like a bunch of BFFs.
“Is than an airplane?”
“No it’s a baby cow with her mother.”
“You’re using all the red!”
“Well you used all the orange. And you’re not allowed to use your hands!”
Of course my assessment of them all being best friends was accurate. Surely THEIR mothers had told them not to talk to strangers as well and that’s why no one was talking to me. I WAS THE STRANGER.
Note from the hamster: Yes, even back then she OVER-THOUGHT EVERYTHING.
The truth is I was shy. And really wanted to finish my picture of me holding my very own black kitten because if I could finish my picture, maybe my kittens would hurry up and hatch.
“HATCH?!” You ask.
Why, yes. Hatch.
You see back then I believed – and here comes that really dumb belief I told you about yesterday – that kittens were hatched from pussy willows and I had a branch of them carefully sheltered in a nest made of tissue paper in my pajama drawer at home.
Only my kitten eggs weren’t in my pajama drawer at home at that very minute. They were in my knapsack because when I was getting ready for my first day of school that morning it suddenly occurred to me that “THEY MIGHT HATCH TODAY.”
And that, Dear Moxie-Dude reader, was my earliest belief about where
babies kittens come from. Partly because Cabbage Patch dolls weren’t invented yet but mostly because I just really wanted a kitten and even back then I believed that you could make anything happen – all you had to do is BELIEVE.
By the way, my kittens did not hatch that day (in case I may have made it sound like anything is possible).
But a few weeks later one of our neighbours found a litter of kittens in his barn and my brother and I each got one. My brother’s was grey and mine was black and eventually my kitten eggs just dried up and fell apart but it didn’t matter anymore because I had my black kitten.
PS. This may seem unrelated but it just dawned on me that this may explain my attraction to men with black hair. Just saying.