When I was a boy I was very quiet and shy, in fact I didn’t allow my personality to reveal itself for the first 10 years of my life. Thinking back, all the turmoil that was happening at home probably had an adverse affect on me. I was firmly under my shell, occasionally peeking out to see if it was safe!
So, at school, up to the age of 10, I had very few friends, very few people I could be myself around.
Most of the teachers terrified me and as a result, my learning journey suffered immensely. I fell behind in the majority of my lessons and was often thrown into the bottom class, probably because they believed I didn’t get it or they didn’t have the patience to teach me properly or more importantly, get to know me. Whatever their reasons, I tumbled into the bottom class of everything like an out of control snowball. One of the teachers in particular made me literally shake with fear. The teacher was female but her name escapes me. She stood very tall and broad for a woman, had a quadruple chin and wore large rimmed glasses on the end of her nose. She singled me out most days and made me stand by her desk and read to her whilst the rest of the class carried on with their work. My mum later discovered I had mild dyslexia.
I would very often mispronounce words whilst I was standing to attention next to her, which initially forced a laugh to escape her tight lips then she would bark the correct pronunciation in my face and made me repeat it several times until she was happy.
The tables turned one afternoon that is seared into my memory. It’s important to mention that the classroom was on a slight slope, with the teachers sitting at the bottom. My desk was situated in direct line with hers but right at the very back of the classroom, so I could plainly see the horns sticking out of her tightly pulled back hair. I was bursting to go to the toilet because I had played football over the lunch break and hadn’t given myself enough time to go. She had made me so afraid of her that my hand refused to go up to ask to be excused.
So there was nothing else to do: the floodgates opened and a very warm Hoover Dam ran down in a very straight line and accumulated around the teachers very shiny shoes. The boy say opposite me started to laugh, which made the dragon move her feet, then the ‘Splash splash’ sound that her feet made compelled her to look down and scream like a wolf on crack cocaine. I managed to stop the flow and froze in fear as she vented her fury on me. I somehow found the strength to stand up and run for the hills accompanied by the screams of the dragon and the laughter of the class.
I ran home over the park in the freezing cold, the wind partially drying my school trousers and freezing the tears that fell.
Looking back, I’m glad I pissed on her shoes, it couldn’t have happened to a nicer dragon.
That doused her fire. 😊