I attended kindergarten at Clover School, a charming orange brick building with a large, fenced in playground. It was a one-room school house, not far from our home. From our driveway, turn left, and go the short distance to the end of Hunt Road. Turn left onto Lake Nepessing Road, and take it to the end. There, right across the big road that was M-21, but used a different name, was Clover School.
When my mother attended classes there, the lessons went all the way through eighth grade. She often walked to school. When I was in kindergarten, that seemed like a long and dangerous walk, along the narrow shoulder of the road, and over the railroad tracks. Walking to school was never expected of me.
By the time I went to Clover School, it accommodated classes for only kindergarten, first and second grade. My father drove us to school every morning, in his big light blue work truck. One day his friend Topper, wanting to have a conversation with Dad, rode with us, standing on the step outside the truck, and holding on to the open window. Probably he got inside, when I got out; I don’t remember.
I was dropped off first; Brenda rode all the way to town with Dad, to be dropped off at Bishop Kelly School, where we all attended the first through the eighth grade. One day, Dad forgot to drop me off. When we realized what had happened, Brenda and I clutched each other’s hands, but didn’t say a word. It was both scary and exciting. When he realized his mistake, Dad laughed and joked with us about his forgetfulness, and turned the truck around to take me back.
When it happened again, we thought it had gone over well the first time, and looked at it as an adventure. Again, we stayed silent. That day, when Dad realized he had passed my school, he scolded us for not speaking up. We never let it happen again.
Mrs. Carey was the teacher at Clover School. We sat at long tables arranged in rows, probably divided by grade. We did a lot of coloring, which I was very good at. That’s about the extent of my kindergarten memories!