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The Country Schoolhouse

2006-08-11 15:00

  Lesson 17

  Text A

  The Coustry Schoollhouse

  The country schooihouse was three miles from my uncle's farm. It stood in a clearing in the woods and would hold about twenty-five boys and girls. We attended the school° with more or less regularity once or twice a week in summer. We walked to it in the cool of the morning by the forest paths, and back in the dusk at the end of the day. All the pupils brought their dinners in baskets-corn dodger, buttermilk, and other good things. We sat in the shade of the trees at noon and ate them. It is the part of my education which I look back upon with the most satisfaction. My first visit to the school was when I was seven. A strapping girl of fifteen, in the customary sunbonnet and calico dress, asked me if I "used tobacco" -meaning did I chew it. I said no. It roused her scorn. She reported me to all the crowd , and said :

  "Here is a boy seven years old who can't chew tobacco. "

  I learned to smoke fairly well , but that did not win over anybody. I remained a poor thing, and characterless. I longed to be respected, but I never was able to rise. Children have but little charity for one another's defect.

  Text B

  On a Camping Holiday

  Jimmy Booth and Donald Black are on a camping holiday. They have brought only a little food with them. Jimmy is hungry and he is looking at some rice in a tin. There is only a little rice in the tin. JIMMY:   There isn't much rice, is there?

  DONALD:   No, there isn't, but there are some vegetables.

  JIMMY:   Are there any potatoes?

  DONALD:   No, there aren't. I'm sorry.

  JIMMY:   I'm very hungry, Donald. What can I eat?

  DONALD:   There's a little bread and there are a few biscuits.

  JIMMY:   But I want some rice and some meat.

  DONALD:   All right, I'IL walk to the village and I'll get some meat.

  JiMMY:   Good. By the way, who's going to cook the meat?

  DONALD:   You'll cook it of course!

  Question on Text B

  7. Read the foilowing dialogue once. Underline the key words while reading and retell to your partner the dialogue in your own words.

  Peter:   Hello, Jim. What was the film like?

  Jim:   Awful. It was a complete waste of time.

  Peter:   Why? What was it about?

  Jim:   It was about a married couple. They had to live with the wife's mother, because they didn't have enough money to buy a house of their own.

  Peter:   A lot of young people have to do that.

  Jim:   Yes. but the husband had to work overtime three times a week, so he was always tired.

  Peter:   lt sounds like the story of my life.

  jim:   Yes, it does, doesn't it? But this man was always over-tired, and he couldn't sleep.So he used to take two sleeping pitla every night.

  Peter:   I take sleeping pills sometimes.

  Jim:   Yes, but not two every night. Anyway, the strain was too much for him. He had a nervous breakdown and had to go to hoapital.

  Peter:   It sounds a very depressing film.

  Jim:   Not really. His wife was able to find a good job as an interpreter, because she rnuld speak French and German fluently. After a few months' work, she had a better job than y weher huaband. So in the end, there able to buy a house, and he didts't have to work any more. Stupid, wasn't it?

  Peter:   I don't know. My wife used to speak French. I must tell her to brush it up.

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