Book30:StreetsPavedwithGold

Book 30: Streets Paved with Gold (Smashwords Edition) [電子書籍版]
Clive Cooke

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The first story is set in an adult literacy centre in Johannesburg. The narrator uses his spare time teaching illiterates to read and write while looking for a permanent job. At first he is fascinated by middle-aged and elderly folk struggling to learn to read. Later he is given the much more challenging task of helping a postman, who can already read, to pass his higher grade English examination. And horror of horrors, the postman has to study Shakespeare, an almost impossible task for someone for whom English is his fourth language. According to the narrator, climbing Mount Everest would be easier for the postman. Trekking across the Sahara Desert would be more fun. Swimming with great white sharks would be safer. But the postman is adamant. Shakespeare is what he wants to do. Then, an old granny in the literacy class decides she too wants to study Shakespeare and the battle is set. The two become rivals.
In “Let Them Eat Cake” there is more than a passing similarity to the famous quotation alleged to have been made by Queen Marie Antoinette at the time of the French revolution. A group of wealthy socialites meet once a week to play bridge. The card game is actually an excuse for conversation, the chief topic being their servants. The afternoon is spent in complaining about what they have to put up with and how long-suffering they are. Then, one day, one of the bridge players reluctantly becomes involved in her servant’s personal problems. Finding out how the other half lives is a shock to her and she is faced with some important choices to make.

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