"Next on the agenda, today's storytime. The person who was going to do it has today off, any volunteers?" Blank stares engulfed the groggy morning meeting room. Everyone was considering how long until their next cup of coffee, leaving no thought for children's books. "No, really, anyone?"
"I'll do it." The words were out before she knew it. She must still be sleeping, why else would she have volunteered at the last possible moment to read to a group of toddlers.
The meeting adjourned shortly thereafter and she made a mad dash to the children's section, hoping that all of the hours she had spent reading there rather than working would finally come in handy. Rifling through the shelves, she located some of her favorites, Let's Do Nothing, Always Lots of Heinies at the Zoo, The Duchess of Whimsy, and then heaped on more for good measure.
Returning to the meeting room to use the half hour before story time to prepare, she thought of all the Scandinavian fairy tales she had forced on her roommates years ago. Toddlers can't be that bad, right?
The appointed hour came and she took her seat in the oversized chair designated for the storyteller. A handful of children sat at her feet and she grabbed her first book.
"'Help!' yelled the Page. 'King Bidgood's in the bathtub and he won't get out. Oh, who knows what to do?'" She added all the emphasis and pizazz she could think of and it must have worked, the children were all smiling. "'I do!' cried the Duke...'"
The children didn't move. They kept their eyes locked on her and the colorful illustrations waiting for the next book. Unsure of how many to read, she worked her way through the small mountain of resources she had prepared. She asked them questions, did voices where she could, and still the children smiled. Finally out of books, the story time came to an abrupt end. The children returned to their waiting mothers while she gathered the picture books and returned to work.
Did she do that right? Did the kids have fun? Did she choose the right books? Who cares, she thought, I just got to spend an hour and a half reading some of my favorite books!
"'Come in,' yelled the king, 'tonight we fish in the tub!'"