Grandmamma and Grandpappa Lowenbrau, the Danger Twins, Little Wendy and Mother were being shown Oxford by Mother’s friend “The Don”.
“Observe the Chippendale stools made especially for this library.”
Unfortunately, no one observed Little Wendy “coloring in” several pages of a first edition of Newton’s theories.
“Tut tut tut!” said Great Aunt Eunice, discretely slipping a first folio of Shakespeare’s into her corset.
“Husband! I forbid you to look at that book.”
Grandpappa hastily returned the illustrated Karma Sutra to the shelves.
“How flexible those Indians must be!” he mused to himself.
Suddenly pandemonium erupted when the Danger Twins espied an annoying American child on the stairs who they encountered earlier in Magdalen boasting that his “Pa could have bought Oxford but it wasn’t worth having!” and started throwing paper darts fashioned from pages torn from a first edition of Alice in Wonderland.
One poked the brat in the eye and he tumbled backwards down the stairs to the general satisfaction of the party.
The Don appeared slightly non-plussed.
“Well that is just typical” sighed mother.
This is an actual photo of the library at Christchurch college which I was fortunate enough to visit thanks to my friend “The Don” who gave us a glimpse at some of the treasures including a first edition of Newton’s works and Alice in Wonderland. The library also contains Cardinal Wolsey’s hat in a splendid presentation case. Why this relic is preserved with such care I cannot say. I live in hope that one day my own moth-eaten beanie will end up encased in a gothic cabinet at Magdalen College, my spiritual home.
For: Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers.