Memories of Magister Mykhailo!
- Ivanka Bihun
Goshen, N.Y. - In November our CYM riy, the Vovky (Wolves), sent a letter to invite a furry sumivets to our oseredok to spend the winter with us. Magister Mychailo is a stuffed brown teddy bear, “born” in Canada. He travels all over the world were SUM exists and teaches sumivtsi about other sumivtsi in the world. He travels with a backpack filled with pictures, letters, and articles about the places he’s been to and the sumivtsi he has met. His travels so far have taken him to Ukraina, Great Britain, Australia, and now the United States.
He came to our oseredok on the eve of St. Andriy’s feast day, just in time to spend Andriyivskiy Vechir with us. Everyone was happy to meet him except for Tania and Danylo, who wanted a real live bear! We presented him with a jar of honey. He arrived dressed in his SUM uniform and a beret on his head. Because bears usually sleep through the winter, Mychailo had never attended the festival of Andriyivsi Vechir, but he eagerly participated in the festivities. Podruha Hanusia read his fortune by letting wax from a lit candle drop into water and seeing what shape it took. His fortune said he still had a long trip ahead of him.
Magister Mychailo attended our weekly SUM meetings, and participated as we cheered on the Orange Revolution in Ukraina. During the Christmas holidays, he went caroling with us to Ukrainian homes in Kerhonkson, where he met another magister Mychailo. This one was a man, not a bear. He also went with us on our field trip to the Ashokan Preserve, where he learned how to make maple syrup. He also watched us as we in the tin smithing shop as we made and decorated candle holders, and dust pans. At the Ashokan preserve he met other sumivtsi from an oseredok in Whippany, which is where he went when he left us. We will miss him, but we wish him a safe and pleasant journey as he travels to other oseredky in the U.S. and the world.