I’ve been struggling with what to write about this week. For some reason I’m not feeling very wordy, or poetic, or thoughtful. But then I saw a movie advertisement online and inspiration hit!
When you’re a child, a towel tied around a your neck can become a cape that helps you fly or a bike ride through a cemetery at night becomes a harrowing escape from ghosts. But, where do those ideas come from? Would a child be afraid of riding her bike through the cemetery if she hadn’t read or heard something like that before? I don’t know. But, I do know that what we read informs our imagination and leads us on adventures. So, what was your first taste of adventure?
I read a lot as a child (and still do). I read a wide range of books, everything from The Babysitter’s Club to books by Laura Ingalls Wilder and one of my all time favorites, Little Women.
But when I was six, on the nights when he didn’t have class, my dad read The Hobbit to me as my bedtime story. I can’t imagine a scenario where that book wouldn’t plant ideas of adventure in a reader’s mind. Now, did I remember every detail of the story from when my dad read it to me? No. I was six. And there were lots of extraneous conversations involved about “reading it right!” My dad sorely wanted to do all the voices and I wouldn’t let him; I was a willful child.
But I digress.
When the book was finished and I started reading more and more on my own, I may not have remembered all of the details, but I remembered a group of companions traveling in order to recapture their homeland. I remembered hobbits, who seemed to live wonderful lives in their houses with the round doors and fully stocked kitchens. I remembered a wizard dressed in gray who provided me my first taste of magic; something I still enjoy reading and writing about to this day.
But most of all, I remembered the adventure. The travel to distant lands, and the encounters with new people and species. I remembered a man named Bilbo who went against the nature of a hobbit and stepped outside his round front door and went on a adventure. How his life changed with that one decision! And it had a lasting impact on him, and his family (although I wouldn’t know about Frodo until years later). Just knowing that books like this existed made me want to keep reading so I could follow more characters on their journeys; and it inspired me to have journeys of my own.
So, I guess my question is this. What was your first taste of adventure?
I'm going to have to think about that… It might have been one of George MacDonald's books (where Princess Irene and Curdie go into the mining tunnels inhabited by nasty goblins). I actually did a Thursday's Children post on Little Women a couple of weeks ago. Love that you wouldn't let your father do all the voices. Children can be so mean to their parents, lol.
Ooohhh – good question and post! I think my first taste of adventure happened when I was very young. My mom used tell us many of the Arthurian tales as bed time stories. I remember laying in bed recreating the stories and adding my own twists on the knights' quests long after I should have been asleep. I wanted so desperately to become a knight and have my own adventures.
I would say Star Wars had a lasting impact on me. I had a huge, plastic version of the Millenium Falcon since before I could talk, and the series seemed to open up an entire universe to me. As I grew up, I latched onto all of the newer Expanded Universe books, thrilled about getting the chance to experience all new adventures with Luke and co.
Can you guess how excited I am about Disney's plan for Lucasfilm??? 😀
Thanks for sharing!
He still brings that up to this day. “Remember when I tried to do the voices in the Hobbit and you wouldn't let me?” I think I scarred him for life. 🙂
The King Arthur legend is another one of my favorites! And again, a wizard. I feel like that particular story leaves a lot of room for imagination.
I know exactly what you're talking about, my brother had the same Millenium Falcon. I haven't gotten into the expanded universe, but I'm still enthralled with the films. I'm very interested to see what happens to the new one.
And speaking of films, only a few more days until the Hobbit comes out. Guess who will be there opening weekend? 🙂
Thanks so much for joining us on Thursday's Children! My first taste of adventure was probably She-Ra, if I'm being honest. I think I already fancied myself a Princess of Power at age 5! I also wouldn't mind having a winged unicorn for a pet 😉