Thursday, 4 June 2015

High School and Teacher's College

Thus, during my teen years, my father brought me up with the help of my sister who was already married with little ones of her own.

I was ten years old when my first nephew, Jimmy, was born and my niece, Louise, was born two years later. I was so excited and wondered how long it would be before I could play with them. The numbers grew and eventually there were nine little munchkins. As I grew older, I babysat for all of them for the measly sum of 25 cents an hour, but I loved it and enjoyed them all.

 My first 'real' job at age sixteen, was typing at a collection agency.  I got this opportunity through my brother-in-law, whose friend owned the business. My pay for this was twenty-five dollars a week!  My assignment was at St. Joseph's Hospital's  Accounting Office, where I had to obtain all the 'bad debt' information so that the agency could proceed with legal action ( in those days there was no government insurance for patients). I did this for the summer and was offered part time work for weekends and holidays by the administration office at St Joseph's. I kept this position for the rest of high school and Teachers College. 

In 1955 we moved to Hamilton where I attended Cathedral Girls School for my last 2 years of high school. I graduated in 1958. The ceremony with cap and gown was held at the Basilica Cathedral in Hamilton. The dinner and dance was at the Royal Connaught Hotel. My white satin dress with red sash was made by my sister Josie. There were no fancy, thousand dollar dresses, limos, grand photo ops, or holidays to Mexico or other paradise, as there is today.  The money spent on  graduation today is probably ten times more than was spent on my wedding.

I went on to Hamilton Teachers College for the two year course. My teaching career was short lived as I only taught for four years for the Hamilton and Toronto Separate School Boards, teaching at the grade five level.

After graduation,  I bought a 1957 Pontiac car which my brother Ralph helped me pick out.   So now I owned a car but couldn't even drive yet!  Well, it took me one week to learn to drive and get my license  and on my 21st birthday, I was off to Toronto with a girl friend  ~ for dinner and my first  drink,  and a show at a 'coffee house.'

When I quit teaching in 1964, I returned to work in the accounting department at St.Joseph's Hospital where I had a part-time job since I was 16 years old. I worked there on the weekends and summers doing general office work, but I loved working on the information desk the best of all. I preferred this type of work to teaching, because a teacher's work is never done and the children were starting to be sassy, which bothered me.

Incidentally, it was at this hospital where I met my future husband, John Ross. 

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