Once upon a time, during a November long ago, there was a little girl named Jennie. She was almost 6 years old and attended kindergarten at the local elementary school.
Little Jennie didn't mind school- she liked to draw, make figures with clay and she loved to read and write -(though the pace at which they were all taught was agonizingly slow some days)!
There was even a cute boy named Elvin to sit next to and she would sometimes lean her head on his shoulder and bat her eyes at him. He may or may not have loved this.
Yes truly, after a couple months in this strange new institution called 'school' she was able to generally enjoy herself.
Except for one thing . . . recess.Everyday in the middle of the morning, Mrs. Hatchel -their teacher- would ruthlessly throw all the children outside to 'play' on the desolate playground. Their options for amusement were slim. They could play tether ball (which no one could reach), climb the dome (which was too high) or play four square though only one yellow, half-deflated ball was available to share among twenty-four students.
It wasn't that Jennie didn't try to like recess. For weeks she had grimly walked in a snake-like line out the door with the rest of her class to endure rain, wind, cold and utter boredom. She would stand with a couple other little girls right next to the classroom window and gaze longingly into the cozy room thinking of all the better things she could be doing.
One day, when it wasn't too cold, she even tried four-square only to find herself with a bad nose-bleed from getting pummeled with the ball. Kids laughed. Jennie cried. It took all the rest of the morning for the bleeding to stop.
Another day she stood out on the playground looking up at the tether ball pole, wandering what it's purpose was. She was wearing her grey sweat-dress with the word 'hello' in different languages printed all over it. As she looked up suddenly from nowhere a little boy came over and actually FLIPPED UP HER DRESS! Everyone saw! She screamed!
He ran away shrieking with laughter and chanting something about 'Friday Flip-Up Day'.
Kids laughed. Jennie cried. She was utterly humiliated.
After that day little Jennie REFUSED to go out to recess ever again.
No matter how much Mrs. Hatchel begged, she would not be budged. Mrs Hatchel threatened that Jennie would have to stay in with her head down on the desk if she choose to miss recess. Though she would have preferred to color, Jennie found this little mid-morning rest rather refreshing after awhile.
Days passed. Mrs Hatchel seemed more and more cross with having to stay in the classroom with Jennie during recess instead of slipping off to the teacher's lounge for coffee. Emotions began to run high. Jennie began to feel uncomfortable not only with recess, but with her teacher as well and soon . . .
little Jennie didn't want to go to school AT ALL!It was around this time that she found herself on an outing with her Grammie one day. They were shopping at Hallmark, just browsing around when suddenly Jennie saw HIM!
He was about 2" high, plastic and he had a feather in his headband and a drum in his hands. His name was 'Indian Chipmunk'- and that November, at almost 6 years old, Jennie learned what it was like to fall in love.
Needless to say, Jennie HAD to have him.
But Grammie was clever. She would only unite little Jennie with Indian Chipmunk IF Jennie would go to recess for one whole week.
ONE ENTIRE WEEK!
And so, after a tearful goodbye to her love in the Hallmark store, Jennie left there to brave a week of recess at school. She would go for HIM. She would do it for Indian Chipmunk.
Little Jennie is not so little now, but every November she brings Indian Chipmunk out of storage and sits him out in a prominent place to greet her. She still doesn't like being out in the rain and wind and cold- and she never did warm to the idea of recess, but luckily there is no one to make her go do such things now. Still- she knows he was worth it all because they lived happily ever after!
- THE END -
Ps. She may or may not still kiss his little chipmunk nose and stroke his little feather . . . ;)