Just begun listening to the audio version of Moab.
Stephen loves, adores the English language with the same relish that.. oh.. Roman Polanski might evidence when he's screening Shirley Temple movies in the privacy of his flat in Paris.
Stephen, however, chooses to share his passion with us, for which we all grateful.
He even shares some stories scatological from his early school days.
I believe I have a topper.
In 1954, when I was 5 years old, I was dropped off at kindergarten by my mother. At the time, our small Rocky Mountain town of Rock Springs, Wyoming hadn't yet received TV broadcasting, so as a 5 year old I had only heard about schools but had never seen the insides of one as we had no TV and I had never been to the movies. So all I knew was that schools were places kids learned to read and write.
On the first day I scrambled to find a seat next to Robert Zotti, a boy from down the block who I knew vaguely. We sat together at an old-fashioned for-even-then 2-person bench desk with a tilt-up top that you could put your books under, and a hole on the top for a bottle of ink.
After listening to our new teacher for a few minutes I sensed that my bench mate, Robert was getting antsy and I whispered "What's the matter?"
He hissed back in some discomfort, "I have to go to the toilet."
We had no idea that schools had toilets as we had only used the ones at home and we didn't think to ask as everything was so foreign and overwhelming.
After about 20 more minutes of squirming and sweating I noticed my bench-mate was now clenching and making soft grunting sounds. Then he surreptitiously reached into the back of his pants, scooped something out, raised the desk top slightly and deposited the contents of his hand in the desk.
Then he whispered to me as he pointed to a desk across the room, "Tomorrow we sit over there.."
That was my first day of school and I often wonder whatever became of Robert Zotti.