You know how some people from your childhood just stick with you?
Let me tell you about my first grade teacher.
Her name was Mrs. Sturwold.*
She was tall and beautiful, with big, bright red hair and even bigger blue eyes. She wore lots of really bright coloured clothing, like fuchsia blouses and lime green slacks. (In all fairness, it was the early 90s when I was in the first grade.) She also wore big earrings and chunky necklaces and rings. Her makeup was always dramatic, and sometimes as bright as her clothing.
She had an incredibly engaging personality: funny and kind with a great, boisterous laugh that gave away her smoking habit even more than her speaking voice.
And she always smelled amazing.** I remember this one day, during gym class, I got warm and took off my pink cardigan sweater, and Mrs. Sturwold said she would hold it for me. She tied the sleeves around her neck and wore my cardigan golf club style until after class. When she returned it to me, I couldn’t stop holding the sweater to my nose: it smelled like her sweetly intoxicating floral perfume for days.
Only about five years ago, when reminiscing about fantastic school teachers, did I turn to my mom and go, “Holy shit! Mrs. Sturwold was basically Lucille Ball!”***
If you know me at all, you know that I am mildly OBSESSED with Lucille Ball. She’s one of the few people in the world I would call an idol. I even named one of my dogs after her (which, believe you me, is a huge compliment). I totally want to be her when I grow up (minus all the sad stuff).
So no wonder I loved Mrs. Sturwold so much. I mean, she was awesome, but also, LUCY!
Lesson learned: I’ve had impeccable taste since I was a wee one.
*I realize that saying ‘was’ makes it sound like she is no longer. I really hope that isn’t the case, but I haven’t seen Mrs. Sturwold since I was her student, so I have no idea where she’s at.
**I never met Lucille Ball, but I assume she also smelled phenomenal. Because duh, right?
***And she agreed, BTW. I wasn’t like, freaking out with her just staring at me. There was a mutual “OMG!” and everything.