I’ve always loved books from being a little child and although I was never one to always be wanting or demanding anything, I always really wished and hoped that I might get books for Christmas and birthday presents… and usually was lucky. I would often receive anthologies or reference books, or collections of stories which I could read and reread. I had a marvellous book about heroes and I can remember the pictures in it now, Eric the Red, Lief Ericson, Hannibal… and a Corsican bandit… I wonder who he was and why he was in a book about heroes?
One year I received the Reader’s Digest Junior Treasury, and it is one of the few books I still have from my childhood; I mentioned before that I left a box of books in the care of a friend who managed not to look after them… I would love to know what they were, I know there was a beautifully illustrated ‘Alice in Wonderland’, but as for the others, gone, gone, gone.
I still have the Junior Treasury, published in 1960; what a great book it was for me and no doubt many other children; stories science, puzzles, historical pieces, biographies of men and women who could inspire a child… so much!
This was one of my favourite chapters; I read it and reread it and once used it to give a talk in a speaking competition at school. I was already interested in Tibet and this just added to my fascination for the country My dad was a scientist, but not a physicist and I did not take after him… I had little interest or understanding of science although I always wished I did. I loved astronomy but that was never taught at school. The Junior treasury made any subject interesting, even flying aeroplanes!
Because I grew up in an era of the popularity of Westerns and cowboys and Indians (I was Roy Rogers… until I became Tonto) I had an interest in horses, and did go riding for a while, but I was never a really horsey girl… swimming soon took over!