October 13, 2016 · 8:11 am
“In this beloved residence the opportunity to make friends is there for the taking.”
Does that look familiar? Probably. Those are the words with which I started my last essay, but contrary opinions were expressed by some of my friends who found their entry to residential living difficult. Most of us are here of our own accord. Most of us have gone through the wrenching business of closing down a home, and deciding what to take and what to discard. Several, like me, have moved from one city to another. Despite our similarities, our reactions to the move are different. Why? Continue reading →
September 24, 2014 · 6:11 pm
September 1940, and back-to-school time – but what a difference this year. We’re in Edmonton, in order to go to University. My sister Doris and I arrived a few days ago, and are living at Pembina, the women’s residence. She’s nineteen, and I am eighteen. We feel very grown up, but a bit scared too. Everything is so new, and so different.
First the business, the official registration. We fill out papers, choose courses, and follow directions until our heads ache. Classes start right away. We have to learn where the right buildings and classrooms are. Advice is coming from all sides. On top of everything there are signs everywhere announcing that this is Frosh Week, with special, not-to-be missed events. What in the world is Frosh Week?
No time to find out, we are due back at Pembina for a meeting with the Matron. She runs the place. All the new girls–the Freshies, as we’re called–go to Miss Gregory’s special meeting room. She gives us a serious talk about the dangers of alcohol, how to dress and behave properly, and the house rules which all residents must obey. For example, curfew time is 10:30 PM, for evening engagements of any kind. If we fail to make it on time, we lose our permission for evening dates “until further notice.” Seems rather juvenile to me, but there it is. The older student residents keep sneaking us information about how to get in after hours, without being caught!
What’s a new gal to do? Getting “properly” dressed, and putting on white gloves as well, just to have tea with the Matron, does not qualify as fun! Not knowing what Frosh Week is all about makes it hard to choose what to do. Continue reading →
August 13, 2014 · 5:52 am
This is the first in a new blog category for me: Photographic Memory.
Each will feature a photo from my life
and the memories it provokes.
Marjorie Mae Thompson
& Andrew Sheldon Gibson
It’s a warm and sunny weekend afternoon. Dad and I have come into Calgary from the farm. I’ve been working there for him, since the university year ended. Sheldon has the weekend off from the Imperial Oil seismic crew where he is working. It is such fun to be together again. At university in Edmonton we’ve been “going steady”—a state somewhere between dating and being formally engaged to be married—but with both of us working out of town, it’s rare to have a summer day together.
I want Sheldon to see the farm, the school I attended, the area where I grew up. Mom wants to restock the food in the farm house, so out we come from Calgary. While she is doing that, Dad drives us over to see the South Valley School.
In the small town of Claresholm, where his Dad was the bank manager, Sheldon went to what seems to me like a big school—four rooms for eight grades. I spent my first eight years of school in this one-room school. But “big” school or small, we both have happy memories of those early years.
As Dad takes a picture of us, leaning up against the school, I’m glad I’m wearing my favourite summer skirt today. The colours are so nice, blue and pink stripes, and I love the way it flares. Sheldon likes it when I wear pretty things.
As we stand there, squinting into the sun, I can hear a meadowlark singing, and feel the prairie breeze blowing by. I’m warmed by the summer sun and by my love for Sheldon. It’s a day to remember.