As always happens, I was looking for one long-lost item when I ended up finding another, instead. I dearly loved this book when I was a child. I’ve been so wanting to see it again, and had no idea where it was. Turns out it was in a cabinet of books that I assembled not too long ago. As I didn’t recall doing that, and instead kept talking about the wonderful book I loved as a child and where in the world could it be, I am reminded of how stark are the impressions made in youth as opposed to those made, oh, yesterday. I could remember the pictures in the book but not the fact that I’d found and seen the book within the last few years. The memory is so strange.
But, when it comes down to it, I value the memory of those childhood reading moments more than I regret a duller memory about where I’ve put a book or some keys or whatever. The pictures in this book are so robustly colored, so vivid in an almost technicolor way. They are wonderfully and impossibly idyllic and show a world that never existed but that I grew up seeing so much of in the 1970s with all its (then relatively recent) 1950s pop-cultural hand me downs. I was a sucker for that stuff.
Know what I mean? Remember all the retro cartoons on UHF channels in the afternoons back then? (Those were often from even earlier eras.) And, you could sometimes back then, when poking around a corner of your house, still run across a stray magazine with advertisements for a Thunderbird, or a Chevrolet and a family of toothy grinning perfect people on their way to see the USA? It was a sort of happy yesterday that burned itself into your little kid brain like fairy tales or mythology.
So, this book was one of those dreamy childhood memory-makers that sticks with you forever. One of. I’m still looking for more…
For your enjoyment (and, let’s face it, mine), here are some photos of my old, dear copy of Peter Goes to School.