My hometown had several neighborhoods whose name started with the word Neve (oasis). The oldest and most famous was Neve Magen - The Shield Oasis. This neighborhood (adjacent to ours) , was established for the families of high rank officers in the Army. It had little streets with private cute houses and with a very special atmosphere, that of a community with common interests. In tense times (during pre-war,war, post-war), the atmosphere became that of a close family.
A haute-couture seamstress whose clientelle was based almost entirely on the wives and daughters of those army officers lived in our vicinity. One day she turned to me ,a high -school girl, and asked whether I would be willing, after school hours, to keep an eye on a seven year old boy whose mother had died untimely on the previous year. I was to stay with him until his father, the officer, gets back from Headquarters or any of the grandparents show up, whatever comes first. I accepted the offer as the money was generous, the boy, Danny, seemed well behaved, and I was kind of excited to play 'little mother' to him.
One day, Danny came home from school with a black swollen eye. He got beatten by a classmate. The next day, our officer took the kid by hand and the two strolled towards the school building which was not far , to face the little agressor. The latter was not present as he got suspended from school immediately after the incident , so, our arrogant officer (yes, he was very arrogant) "spilled " it all on the young teacher. He accused her , in front of the whole class, of incompetence, lack of control and failure to impose discipline, threatened to have her fired , and finally made her burst into tears.
When father and son came back home, the boy entered his tiny room, locked the door, and refused to eat and/or talk to his father. He cried loudly and bitterly repeating between the heartaching sobs the one question :how dare you talk like this to my beloved teacher?.
I approached the officer and told him he must go look for the teacher ,apologize in front of her, and ask her to come talk to the boy. Since he loved his child more than his arrogance, he did that. He arrived with the teacher . The boy unlocked the door and fell into her arms, still neither looking at, nor speaking to his father. The teacher was invited to stay for dinner. She stayed for dinner, and then... stayed forever. It all happened very fast: the officer had fallen in love with her, asked her to marry him and insisted that she quit her job as a teacher.
I was very proud to have been the 'architect' of all this happy end. However, I was also aware of the fact that the three were winners, I was the loser in this story. They all got Love plus something: the teacher got a loving husband, the officer got a loving wife, the boy got a loving stepmother and private teacher , whereas I was about to lose a job with good money.
As they say : One person's Gain is another Person's Loss.
Happy Valentine's Day!