Cherry wished the train would go faster. She was still out of breath from running for it. She pressed her cheek against the window to admire the green fields and fertile farms through which the local train poked along. Cherry’s mother, who knew the headmistress of the Jamestown School for Girls from their own school days, had warned her that the school was deep in the country. Fortunately, it was not too far from Hilton, Illinois, which meant that she would be able to spend all school holiday vacations at home.
As the boarding school nurse, she would have full charge of the school infirmary. It would be fun to work with young people and a refreshing change from her last job — an unexpectedly thrilling assignment as nurse to a country doctor — something new, something different. If there was anything Cherry enjoyed, it was meeting new people. She was glad that she was a nurse because nursing, in its many branches, provided an Open sesame to new and exciting experiences — and because more importantly, a nurse can help to alleviate human suffering. She remembered what her twin brother Charlie had said jokingly when he put her on this train in Hilton:
“Don’t set this boarding school on its ear. Wherever you go, twin, you make things happen, but you bring doggoned good nursing too.”
It gave Cherry a good, warm feeling to know that her pilot brother, and her parents, too, were proud of her. They had made that clear during this past week, when they’d had such a satisfying family reunion, in their big, old-fashioned house. The week’s rest had left Cherry’s cheeks glowing rose-red and her black eyes sparkling. Even her jet-black curls shone with extra good health. She felt fully ready to tackle her new job.
Cherry Ames, Boarding School Nurse
by Helen Wells (1955)