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One day the teacher told us that if we were all well behaved that we would have a special surprise at recess. In kindergarten what could be better than recess? Candy at recess, maybe? We were all on the edge of our seats waiting for recess. If someone even thought of misbehaving the others would grimmace at them until they sulked down into their seat. What could it be?
The bell rings and we all get our coats and head out to the recess area, which was a large covered cement expanse that reminded me of a fenced in parking garage. Where is the surprise? I thought it was a scheme to get us to all keep quiet and be good children. Pfft, next they’ll tell us that Santa is a lie.
Recess was about 5 minutes from ending and the teacher had us all congregate near the janitor door (I thought the janitor lived there because it said “janitor” on it). A lady with hiking boots came out backwards and stayed with her back to us. The teacher explained that we shouldn’t be loud or make any sudden moves when we see the surprise. The booted lady turned around and there it was! A live raccoon.
35 little gasps emitted from our little crowd. It was sooooo adorable and cuddly looking. The booted woman told us a little bit about it and that she was from “the zoo” (I didn’t know they kept people there, too) and then she asked if we wanted to pet it?
70 tiny eyes lit up with glee. She explained that we can each only pet it ONE TIME and ONE TIME only. Everyone took their turn. I waited patiently, so very patiently. Finally, it was my turn to pet the cute little fuzzy raccoon. As I reached to touch it, it turned its nose toward my hand to sniff…
“I SAID YOU CAN ONLY PET HIM ONCE!!!”, screached the booted harpy. I tried to say “I didn’t get to pet it yet.” but all I got out was “I…” and she disappeared behind the door marked “janitor”.
I got to live vicariously through the others by asking “Was it soft?”
Lesson learned: Disappointment comes in little furry packages.