IN HOT WATER - AGAIN
Oh dear, I’ve put my foot in it – again. If you read my last blog you’ll know that I’ve never been able to read Don Quixote by Cervantes – a great classic of world literature. It occurred to me that if I were ever stranded on a desert island it might be good to have a copy of Don Quixote with me so that, at last, I might be able to study it as it deserves to be studied. I said I found it difficult. I always fall asleep when I try to read it. I don’t understand the humour, either. All of those things are, I readily admit, my fault – not Cervantes’.
But it was all a bit too much for Paco (see ‘Comments’ on the blog). He wants to meet me with pistols at dawn to defend the honour of Spanish culture in general and Cervantes’ great work in particular. Paco, it’s only a book. And I am almost certainly wrong, wrong, wrong: not clever enough; not studious enough; not diligent enough; simply not capable of appreciating the greatness of a book which is loved and revered by millions (possibly billions) of people around the world. That was my reason for choosing to take it with me to my desert island – so that, at last, I might learn to understand this great work of art.
Believe me, Paco, and anyone else who thought I was insulting Spanish literature, I was not. Actually, I was doing exactly the opposite.
Think I’d better shut up now for a while. Going to curl up with a good book (but I’m not going to tell you which one!) before going out for my Burns’ Night supper.
Have a great weekend!
I’ll try to blog once more before 31st.
All the best,
PS: Many thanks for all your generous comments, Kirsti, Ana-Paula, Anita... I'll respond directly in my last blog.
SOME USEFUL WORDS AND EXPRESSIONS
(to be) in hot water
to be in trouble
to put your foot in it
to do or say something wrong or embarrassing
If a book ‘deserves’ to be studied that means it should be studied because it has some particular value.
pistols at dawn
This expression comes from ‘duelling’, a practice particularly common in France during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. If two noblemen had a disagreement they could solve it by duelling – fighting each other with either pistols (guns) or rapiers (swords). It was common for these fights (duels) to take place at dawn.
A studious person spends a lot of time reading and studying.
Someone who is diligent works hard and carefully.
capable of appreciating
able to appreciate [note the construction with a change of preposition]
greatly respected and admired
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