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Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Captains Courageous

Besides writing a tight little story, Rudyard Kipling has a genius for dialect.  All dialogue is spelled out phonetically, just as the characters' accents dictate.  This made it tricky until I got the flow of the speech, but eliminated the need to invent my own sound for each character during our read-aloud.  We're planning to read Kim later.  This makes me a little less apprehensive.

The girls have surprised me by understanding most of the sailing and fishing jargon and colloquialisms.  I admit to being lost during some of the descriptions of mizzen-foc'sle-gurry butt-peak halyard-reef pennant-poops, but I get the point, mostly.  This from a girl who comes from a long line of sailing experts.  Three generations of my forefathers are spinning in their graves right about now.  And please, don't tell my dad, he'll drag out his Chapman's and start lecturing.

Once we settle into the rental house, I am looking forward to signing up for the local Red Cross sailing lessons.  The two older girls, S and G, took them last year.  G was too scared and dropped out.  S finished the course, aced her 100 question final exam, but never got to solo because of continuous bad weather.  With L in preschool, I would love to take lessons along with the other two this time.

Daughter number two has been amusing me of late with her observations:

Reading a description in Captains Courageous of the captain of the We're Here, Disko Troop, and his large, eleven inch hands, G noted that they couldn't be any bigger than that, "because if they were twelve inches, they'd be a foot."

While crossing the room with a plate balanced precariously on one hand, her father admonished her that she needed two hands.  "I have two, Dad."

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