and more books. Our visitor yesterday is obviously not 'a reader'. He stood there in the middle of our living area and announced with some pride, "I have not read a book since I left school." He had already indicated, using a delicate four letter word or two, that he did not like our choice of interior decoration - bookshelves. "You two should get a life," he told me in disgust, "You spend far too much time reading."
"What should we do instead?" I asked as mildly as I could.
"What the f....do I know. Try watching a bit of telly for a change...or go to the footy...or go down to the pub and have a few beers. It would loosen you up. You might learn a thing or two."
"Well we do watch a little television..."
"Some ABC rubbish I suppose?"
"And SBS" (Our Special Broadcasting Service which concentrates on international and multi-cultural programmes.)
"There's some bloody good stuff on the other channels. You should be watching those instead and when did you last go to the pub for a few beers?"
"You know I am allergic to alcohol. It brings me out in a rash."
"You should learn to be not allergic. I reckon you could if you tried. The trouble is you just don't want to be sociable. I'll take you down the pub tonight."
"There you are. I told you - you just don't want to be sociable."
"Not like that thanks."
My father comes in from outside. Our visitor wants a couple of screws for something that is falling apart at his place. They disappear out to the shed.
A few minutes later they come inside and I hear them in the room my father uses as his study. It is also lined with books. I hear my father telling him,
"Now take a look at that. It will show you just how to do the job."
"Yeah, right. Thanks."
They come out. Our visitor has a book in his hand. I cannot resist it.
"Books do have their uses."