The Memory of My First Love - by Linda Sherman Murata (’67)
Love bloomed quickly one afternoon when I was an 11-year-old 6th grader at Daniel Freeman Elementary School in Inglewood. I was a viola virtuoso playing in a triple string quartet that year. For some reason, one day we boarded the school bus and were transported to Morningside High School to practice in their auditorium. Being a little 6th grader, I was intimidated by being at such a big high school and walking among such tall students. It was lunchtime when we arrived, so we were told to sit on a grassy hill outside the cafeteria to eat our lunch before going in to practice. The scene that whirled around me was fascinating--hundreds of students were sitting on the grass, eating at tables in the quad, and walking in the hallways. Two boys were walking down a cement-paved slope next to the auditorium, and one of them called out, "Hi, Mr. Mig!" Strolling along toward me came the most handsome man I had ever seen--tall, with a golden-glow complexion, gorgeous blue eyes twinkling with merriment, and he was wearing gray slacks, a white short-sleeved shirt and a blue tie that matched the color of his eyes. I was in love!
I tucked my love deep in my heart and kept it a secret for 40 years. I grew up and became a high school student at MHS and my heart leapt for joy every time I saw Mr. Mig strolling the hallways. The elementary school crush had matured into a love of deep respect as I admired the way Mr. Mig related in such a positive way to all of us students.
Years passed, I went to college, met a young man and I got married. Four children and one teaching credential later, I started working with a colleague named Ms. Migliazzo, who looked startlingly just like Mr. Mig. One day I drummed up the courage to ask if perhaps Mr. Mig was her father. I was flabbergasted and delighted to learn that he was!
Again, years passed. Then one day, a few of my co-workers and I were attending another's 50th birthday party in Westchester. After the party, Ms. Migliazzo said she was going to pick-up her daughter at her parents' house across the street. I was surprised that Mr. Mig lived across the street, but said nothing and got into my car, which was parked in front of his house. I started the engine, but then turned if off. I was sitting in front of Mr. Migliazzo's house. I had to go to the door and say hello.
Ms. Migliazzo opened the door and I told her I wanted to see her dad. A look of confusion spread across her face, but she let me in. There I saw Mr. Mig standing in his family room--tall, with a golden-glow complexion and gorgeous blue eyes twinkling with merriment. I introduced myself to him and told him the story about how and when I fell in love with him when I was 11 years old. He gave me a big hug and a big kiss on my right cheek. I left his house soooooo happy and didn't wash my face that night so that I could keep his kiss a while longer.