Gal Smiley and I have been reading Little House on the Prairie together. It’s a hit, by the way, and we’ve been talking endlessly about building houses and finding your own food and how terrible it must have been to live without the internet, and yet, how awesome to have a campfire every single night.
Mostly though, I have to keep my thoughts on this book to myself, because they chiefly consist of, “That woman is A SAINT” and “That man IS INSANE.” I mean, in the first chapter Pa decides that their comfy little house in the woods, with all their family living nearby, is getting too public because one cart goes by each day. HEAVEN FORBID. So he tells his poor wife, “It’s time to move on,” and just like that she is expected to pack up their entire house into a covered wagon, load up her two daughters plus a newborn, and go riding off with this crazy man into “the west” with no actual goal in sight, leaving behind her brothers and sisters and any and all support system she might have had.
And then, they travel for days and days heading vaguely westward, until they come to a big prairie field, and Pa drops anchor and declares, “Oh hey, this place is great, we will build our house right here.” Forty miles from the nearest civilization, filled with wolves and Indians, and heaven only knows who actually owns the land, meaning they will probably be killed or driven out or sued some day.
And through it all, a newborn. Ma is an AMAZON. Although she probably should have told Pa that that was QUITE ENOUGH a long time ago.
In other news, Captain Jelly Belly and I are reading Peter Pan. Has anyone out there actually read this book? I’m sure we all know of the Disney version with the cute, brave boy and his charming little fairy friend and the good versus evil battles with the pirates. But the book itself is really so very, very strange. Bizarre, even. Crazy stuff happens right in the first chapter and it’s all told very matter-of-factly but it’s all just nuts. It’s a lot like Roald Dahl’s stuff but possibly even weirder.
And what’s worse is that the first two chapters, at least, are told from the parents’ point of view. So that means that so far we have heard them be distressed to find out that some weird little boy is flying into their kids’ bedroom at night, and we have seen the weird little boy hover over their children’s beds while gnashing his teeth and otherwise being feral and threatening to the parents, and lastly, we have their extreme sadness and horror when they discover their children are missing from their beds, stolen by this odd creature in the night.
Talk about nightmares! For me, let alone the Captain!
I’m going to finish that one for sure because I’m just too freaked out to discover the real Peter Pan is hardly friendly, and instead is really, really creepy. SHIVERS. Not sure if the Captain will stick it out, though, because the language is very British and very Victorian and very adult, so it’s tough for him to follow the action. Not a bad thing, for his mental health.
Sweet dreams, kiddies!