Syedyshev Oleg
Syedyshev Oleg

Humorous Essays Based on students' memories

"All have died
except for those who are alive, and those whom we remember"Confucius

Essay 36. A lesson to remember for a lifetime

Of course, I should have told this story in the narration about beer at the lectures, where at the conclusion I wrote that I represented a different trend of using lecture time, and our group used to do things for future use. For instance, I was writing letters during lectures.

Птицина О.П

O.P Ptitsina

But Olya Ptitsina from our group, which became already number fourteen, did not write letters, she busied herself with something else during the lectures. And that business occupied her so much, that she sometimes did not react right away, if she was spoken to.

Olya was a pretty, always elegantly dressed girl, calm and sober-minded, though in spite of all that, she readily participated in all adventures of the group. Of course, it is difficult to picture Olya drinking beer through a phonendoscope tube at a lecture, though, I do not rule out that the guys offered her to have a try, and she did not say no. She had the adventurism in her nature, yes, she had it. And how else one should think of that? As for me, I was writing letters during the lectures, but copied the notes at home. I knew who made notes in all details and quickly, and had a good handwriting, too. Olya dealt with that in a simpler way, she did not copy the notes, she simply asked for the notes before tests or examinations, and she was given them.
Well, during lectures Olya did not waste her time on playing Scrabble, she also did not play crisscross, like Vagram and I did, she did not play, because she was mending capronic stockings during the lectures. Yeah, some had beer in their briefcases during a lecture, others envelopes, the third - notes, and Olya had a bag full of capronic stockings.

We enjoyed watching how she deep in her thoughts took a stocking out of her bag, examined it, assessing a missed stitch, and started the mending or for some reason took another stocking, which was studying for a long time as well. Olya had a special device for the mending. It was a small one. It is difficult for me to describe it now, but the girls of that time were aware of it, and all the thrifty ones, like Olya, had the device.
There was one more representative of the students, who did not drink beer, did not play Scrabble or crisscross, that was Lyosha Lapenkov. Sure enough he liked beer. And how a marine boatswain could not like beer or booze in general? He would have never become the boatswain the other way.

Леша Лапенков

Lyosha Lapenkov

And Lyosha Lapenkov was a boatswain, though a former one. Well, Lyosha attended lectures on a regular basis, but slept during them. And he was not dozing, but having a good sleep; sometimes his sleep was so deep, that his plump cheeks (Lyosha was a heavy-set guy) blew out and sometimes he even produced some light, almost inaudible snore. It even could not be called snore, perhaps, it would be better to say "snuffle".

Сны студента Лапенкова на лекции

Dreams of the student Lapenkov during a lecture

And that was at the lecture. We did our best to guard him. Everyone liked Lyosha. He was one of the few, who studied without any support, the financial one. That was why Lyosha constantly worked at night. And at the daytime there were classes. We liked to visit with Lyosha. He never lived in a dorm; always rented an apartment. He rented apartments at the outskirts of the city, which had no any conveniences. The main criterion was that it had to be cheep. So Lyosha had a huge barrel, and he made sauerkraut in it. He took cabbages (of course, without any permission) during autumn farm work, where the students were annually sent. So if some students tried as hard as they could to wriggle out of it, Lyosha on the contrary was always the first one to go. Well, it is clear enough that he laid in a supply of cabbages and potatoes for winter. You will laugh, but once he even had a piglet. And he did a very foolish thing, maybe it was done because of his gratitude, that everybody helped him to provide the supply of food for winter; he invited our whole group to help him to slaughter the pig. I am not going to describe the suffering of the poor animal, whose life the drunk "sadists" were trying to take. Finally, when everything was over, and the pig was cut, there started the time for the fresh meat. The fresh meat was fried and eaten washed down with home brew by fifteen hungry mouths. Later Lyosha informed us that exactly the half was eaten, and half of the container with home brew was drunk, and the container's volume was of three buckets.
And I should have told this story in the narration called "It's a Small World".
Just tell me, how in Kemerovo could possibly meet Vitya Belkov, my high school classmate

Витя Бельков

Vitya Belkov

(we had studied together for ten years, were friends) and Slava Sizikov, my university group mate? Anyway, they knew each other.

Слава Сизиков

Slava Sizikov

At that time Vitya studied at Kemerovo Polytechnic Institute. I remembered about the story, because Slavka never recollected it and refused to talk about it. The story was told to me by Vitya. The story is downright simple and similar to the events of "An Accident". So, Vitya and Slavka decided to celebrate something. And how was anything celebrated among us? They went to a store and at the cashier got a receipt for 3, 87 rubles (for those, who do not know, that was the price of a bottle of "Moscow Special" vodka). They came into the department, and Slava automatically told a sales clerk: "Tow bottles for three and eighty seven", and the clerk without looking at the receipt accepted it and gave them two bottles.

Vitya was dumb-founded, and Slavka was very glad. He was stroking and kissing the free bottle in the most tender way imaginable... and dropped it. You know, as Vitya said, the sound of the broken bottle was very similar to the one, which had astonished Tolik Lopatin. And they both had alike stupor, the only difference was, that Tolik sat on the ground in snow and Slavka on a bench in a city garden. Summing up the story, Vitya said: "I had a lesson to remember for my whole lifetime". Yes, it is true, as they used to say in old days: "Don't covet what is not yours!"

july 29, 2011

© Copyright: Oleg Syedyshev, 2012
Publishing licence #21202110323

Translated by Viktoria Potykinato content