I remember when she first arrived in my class in grade 9. I was a little intimidated by Dolores. "Whoa! This is one powerful, opinionated, determined girl!". I did not want to get on her bad side... I had the impression that she could make my life difficult.
Four years later and I now see these same traits - powerful, opinionated, determined - as Dolores's greatest attributes. I love how Dolores thinks issues through on her own, forms her own opinions and isn't scared to defend her position. I love how she is hungry for different ways of looking at life. I love her confidence and her kindness and her inquisitiveness.
I have learned so much from Dolores. She has explained such things as:
- the difference between "Serbian" and "Serb"
- why Novak Djokovic is more than just a tennis player; he's a cultural symbol
- why new fathers should always wear more than one shirt
- the soothing powers of "chorba"
- various intricacies of the Serbian language, culture and geography
I would love to be able to see twenty years in the future and see what Dolores is up to at such time. With her incredible work ethic, charismatic personality, and well-earned self-confidence, she truly has countless avenues open to her. And I KNOW that she will be successful with whatever path she travels down.
Thank you Dolores for all the good talks we have shared together, the big laughs we have enjoyed together, and the (math) struggles we have conquered together. You have always treated me with respect, affection, and thoughtfulness and I love you for it!
I will think of you always when I look in the far back left corner of my classroom. Henceforth, I will refer to it always as "Dolores's Corner"...