The Hundred Dresses-II, Class 10, English, First Flight
The author teaches us a lesson not to hurt anybody’s feeling. All the girls in the school made fun of Wanda, a Polish girl. As a result , she left the school. Then , the feeling of repentance arose among the students who teased Wanda. Peggy and Maddie even go to her house to stop her from leaving that place , but they could not meet her as she had already left. They feel guilty for making fun of Wanda, who loved them very much.
The students were circling the room and admiring the dress designs made by Wanda. Then there came a note from the Principal’s office for Miss Mason. She told the class that she had received a letter from Wanda’s father. She said that she is going to read it before the class. She was troubled to read it. Then she asked the class to pay attention. She was looking tense. She read a letter from Wanda’s father. In this letter, Wanda ‘s father had informed Miss Mason that Wanda would not come to the school any more. They are moving to the big city. In that city , nobody would consider her name funny and laugh at her.
The whole class became silent and felt bad about Wanda’s leaving the school. Miss Mason understood their feeling. She told them no one should hurt anyone’s feeling just because his or her name is long or funny. She asked the children to think about that. Maddie listened to what Miss Mason said about Wanda. But Maddie could not focus herself in studies. It was true that she had never made fun of Wanda herself. But at the same time, she had not enjoyed Peggy’s asking Wanda about her dresses. She wanted to tell Wanda that she had never meant to hurt her feelings. She looked at Peggy but she did not look up. She decided that she must do something and find Wanda Petronski. She might be still there at her old house. She thought that Peggy would go with her and they would tell Wanda that she had won the contest. They would say that she was smart and the hundred dresses she designed were beautiful.
School was over in the afternoon. Both Peggy and Maddie hurried up towards the Boggins Heights. On the way, Peggy told that she never had called her a foreigner or made fun of her name. She always thought that Wanda was a dumb girl. She never imagined that Wanda could sense the girls had been making fun of her. Maddie spoke nothing on the way. All she hoped was that they would find Wanda and tell her that they were sorry for their treatment. They would request her not to move away and they would fight anybody who was not nice.
Both were proceeding rapidly. After some time , Peggy and Maddie found Wanda’s house in the Boggins Heights. On seeing a little white house, they thought it to be the Petronski house but there was no one in the house. They knocked at the door but there was no answer. Wanda and her family already left the place. They turned to go back down the hill. Peggy told that they had gone and nothing could be done. But Maddie wondered if anything could be done.
That night Maddie could not sleep. She thought about Wanda and the little house she lived in. She also thought of her hundred pictures, made and all lined up in the classroom. As she was unable to sleep, she sat up in the bed and started thinking. After long, she took an important decision. She was never going to stand up and say anything to anyone again. If she heard anyone treated unkindly because of her strange name, she would speak up. She would not worry if it meant being losing Peggy’s friendship. She would never make anybody unhappy again.
On Saturday, both Maddie and Peggy wrote a friendly letter to Wanda telling her about the contest and that she had won. They mailed it. They praised her drawings and asked how she liked the new place. In a way, they were feeling sorry. They mailed it to Boggins Heights. Days and weeks passed but there was no reply. Peggy started forgetting Wanda. But Maddie went on thinking about Wanda. The Christmas time arrived. The classroom was decorated with a Christmas tree.
The teacher showed the letter of Wanda Petronski to the class. It stated her feelings for Room no. 13. She wrote that girls could keep all those hundred dresses because in her new house she had a hundred new ones. She wished Merry Christmas to all. On the way, both the girls held their drawings carefully. The whole atmosphere smiled like Christmas. Maddie reached home but she felt that she would never see Wanda again.
After arriving home’ Maddie pinned her drawings at the torn places in the pink flowered wall paper in the bedroom. The room became full of life and colours. Maddie looked at the drawings and thought that Wanda had been nice to her. She went on looking at the pictures with tears in her eyes. She noticed the head and the face of the drawings. It was exactly Maddie. She thought that Wanda had drawn for her and she ran to Peggy to show her picture. They went where Wanda’s drawing was lying. Maddie raised it and said ‘look’, she drew you. Peggy said, “She must have liked us.” Hearing these words, tears come for Maddie. Thus, both the girls realized that, Wanda liked them very much even though they had teased her. We should never hurt the feelings of others. Nobody can say what may happen.
|shuffling||beating the floor by the fee|
|tense and expectant||serious and hopeful|
|Pollack||slang for Polish person|
|mean||unkind and nasty|
|stole a glance||looked secretly|
|dismissed||allowed the students to leave the school
for the day
|damp and dismal||wet and cheerless or sad|
|gee||an exclamatory word
equivalent to ‘oh!’
|picked on her||treated her unkindly or
|holly||a decorative plant|
|stacked||kept, arranged neatly in a pile|
|cornucopias||decorative containers having
flowers and fruits etc
|clattered up||walked with|
|stolidly||not showing any feeling firmly|
|mailed||sent by post|