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现代大学英语精读1课文

'现代大学英语精读1课文'
Unit One Half a Day I walked alongside my father, clutching his right hand. All my clothes were new: the black shoes, the green school uniform, and the red cap. They did not make me happy, however, as this was the day I was to be thrown into school for the first time. My mother stood at the window watching our progress, and I turned towards her from time to time, hoping she would help. We walked along a street lined with gardens, and fields planted with crops: pears, and date palms. “Why school ?“ I asked my father. “What have I done ?“ “I'm not punishing you, “ he said, laughing. “School's not a punishment. It's a place that makes useful men out of boys. Don' t you want to be useful like your brothers?“ I was not convinced. I did not believe there was really any good to be had in tearing me away from my home and throwing me into the huge, high-walled building. When we arrived at the gate we could see the courtyard, vast and full of boys and girls. “Go in by yourself, “ said my father, “and join them. Put a smile on your face and be a good example to others. “ I hesitated and clung to his hand, but he gently pushed me from him. “Be a man, “ he said. “Today you truly begin life. You will find me waiting for you when it's time to leave. “ I took a few steps. Then the faces of the boys and girls came into view. I did not know a single one of them, and none of them knew me. I felt I was a stranger who had lost his way. But then some boys began to glance at me in curiosity, and one of them came over and asked, “Who brought you?“ “My father, “ I whispered. “My father's dead, “ he said simply. I did not know what to say. The gate was now closed. Some of the children burst into tears. The bell rang. A lady came along, followed by a group of men. The men began sorting us into ranks. We were formed into an intricate pattern in the great courtyard surrounded by high buildings; from each floor we were overlooked by a long balcony roofed in wood. “This is your new home, “said the woman. “There are mothers and fathers here, too. Everything that is enjoyable and beneficial is here. So dry your tears and face life joyfully. “ Well, it seemed that my misgivings had had no basis. From the first moments I made many friends and fell in love with many girls. I had never imagined school would have this rich variety of experiences. We played all sorts of games. In the music room we sang our first songs. We also had our first introduction to language. We saw a globe of the Earth, which revolved and showed the various continents and countries. We started learning numbers, and we were told the story of the Creator of the universe. We ate delicious food, took a little nap, and woke up to go on with friendship and love, playing and learning. Our path, however, was not totally sweet and unclouded. We had to be observant and patient. It was not all a matter of playing and fooling around. Rivalries could bring about pain and hatred or give rise to fighting. And while the lady
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