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What awakened your passion for

(43 Posts)
MiceElf Mon 27-Jan-14 20:51:16

Your academic interest? I remember my father taking me when i was about seven to the old Saxon Cross in my home town and explaining how this was the meeting and market place for the Saxons until the Norman invasion when they established their meeting and market place elsewhere in the city. He told me about the Danelaw and the way the names of the villages and towns gave clues about their history. The story of those long ago people was fascinating and I never wanted to to do anything else other than study history.

absent Mon 27-Jan-14 21:10:16

From quite an early age I had a deep, if slightly horrified, fascination for the mummies in the British Museum from which developed an interest in other cultures, religions, writing and, of course, burial rituals. I also remember a kind chap pointing out the blue whale's ear in the Natural History Museum. Years later, I pointed it out in exactly the same way to absentdaughter.

mollie Mon 27-Jan-14 21:12:31

It was a teacher, Miss Lake, who fascinated me. She taught history and I paid attention... the rest, as they say, is history!

jinglbellsfrocks Mon 27-Jan-14 21:39:24

That's what's been missing in my life!

Why didn't I get one? shock

annodomini Mon 27-Jan-14 21:39:33

I always loved reading but it was the gift of a copy of Sense and Sensibility when I was ill at home at the age of 14 that got me hooked on more 'literary' fiction. I also fell in love with language and linguistics when I read one of the books in my parents' bookcase called 'The Loom of Language' by Lancelot Hogben, still available, though presumably considerably revised.

MiceElf Mon 27-Jan-14 21:52:05

Not too late to start Jingle.

jinglbellsfrocks Mon 27-Jan-14 22:00:02

I do read books.

Not sure what I'd do with an academic interest. Tbh.

LizG Mon 27-Jan-14 22:00:14

I'm still waiting!

Grannyknot Mon 27-Jan-14 22:07:54

My love of reading was sparked by Little Women.

When my son was little I worked at a University next to the Geology Department. My son's school was nearby and he would come to my office after school and spend many an afternoon pestering the staff in the small museum section there. He is a geologist now and recently told me "That sense of awe and wonder I felt as an 8 year old is still as real as ever".

rockgran Mon 27-Jan-14 22:16:01

I wanted to be a cowboy but we couldn't afford riding lessons so I learned guitar instead.

Mishap Mon 27-Jan-14 22:45:19

When I was about 8, I was singing in class and the teacher stopped playing the piano, told us to keep singing walked amongst us - then tapped me on the shoulder and said "You can sing - you must have lessons." And the rest, as they say......... singing and sharing this joy with others has been my life.

Anne58 Mon 27-Jan-14 22:54:06

I remember a particular lesson in Junior School, it was held by a teacher that didn't usually teach our class (with hindsight, I think he may have been drafted in to cover a staff absence, and I also have a suspicion that he usually covered sport)

But I remember so clearly that he was sort of covering how words developed. It was no doubt completely made up, but he was saying how a woman asked her husband to provide some storage for her cups. The husband put up some shelves or boards, The woman then complained that they were getting dusty, so the husband built some doors around them, and lo and behold, there were cupboards!

I think the fact that I can still bring it to mind after all these years must say something!

jinglbellsfrocks Mon 27-Jan-14 22:58:27

Mishap when our headmistress did that in a singing lesson she told me to stop singing.

I saw a plaque the other day. It said "Sing like no-one's listening". That's what I do now. smile

jinglbellsfrocks Mon 27-Jan-14 22:59:02

I wonder if I could get a degree in Game of Thrones.

Anne58 Mon 27-Jan-14 23:02:11

jingll that reminds me, according to my husband, there is a motto on the owners forum for my car, it says" Drive it as if it was stolen" shock I don't think so!

grannyactivist Mon 27-Jan-14 23:04:08

I learned to read at the age of three and from that time on I have been passionate about the written word: Books opened up a whole new world to me and transported me vicariously to other countries, cultures and life situations. They taught me that there were possibilities that my own limited environment didn't otherwise expose me to - and they were my escape. Firstly because they took me out of my difficult circumstances as a child, if I had my head in a book then I was in an altogether different place to my physical body. Secondly, they taught me that I had choices. And finally in a sort of tautology, it was through learning from books that I got to college and then university, thus escaping my background limitations (leaving school at fifteen). So I have been passionate about words for as long as I remember and now I teach them. smile
When I was a child I would read a new word and then use it as often as I could; leading my mother to tell people that I'd swallowed a dictionary. My children chortle amongst each other because I'm the only person they know who has actually read dictionaries for fun, but reading and writing is now, and always has been a joy to me.

Stansgran Mon 27-Jan-14 23:05:32

@jingle have you read T H White's the Once And Future King? You might like it if you like Merlin.passion for something doesn't have to be academic.

Anne58 Mon 27-Jan-14 23:13:34

grannyactivist what you said up there ^^ is something that I have believed in and been passionate about for all of my adult life.

Once you can read, there is nothing that you cannot learn, it provides you with access to a whole universe (metaphorically speaking) of knowledge, the chance to "see" things through the eyes of others, and as for words, may there never come a time when I don't need a dictionary, encountering new words, learning their meanings and gauging how they can be used and applied is still a source of pleasure!

Nelliemoser Mon 27-Jan-14 23:18:29

Geology is now my big interest as a "hobby."
I think my last year form teacher in junior school had a hand. He was well into Meterology and enthusiastic about clouds and Geography.
I was always picking up unusual bits of rock then.

Next came my geography teacher Mr Kneeshaw in my secondary school. He was a lovely man and well respected by all. He saw me through to O level and inspired me, particularly with regard to the physical Geography (Geomorphology) which led me on to do Geology and A level Geography.

Ah! Wegner's theory that continents were drifting about the earth was blissfully mind boggling to me.

In the mid 1960s the concepts of continents subducting and sea floors spreading was not quite main stream enough for a school curriculum.

annodomini Mon 27-Jan-14 23:40:50

There are so many things I would still like to learn about. Even Maths, which I never took seriously at school, despite my father's best efforts! As Chaucer said:

"The life so short, the craft so long to learn
Th'essaie so hard, so sharp the conquering."

That's what studying literature does for you - a quotation for any occasion! Just ask my long-suffering family.

durhamjen Tue 28-Jan-14 00:03:41

Grannyactivist, tell your kids to stop laughing because there's someone else who reads dictionaries for fun.
My kids always used to say, "Mum's got a book on it," if they wanted to know anything, but now they look things up on the internet and it's not such fun. Fortunately all my grandaughters have inherited my love of reading.
When I was at college, where I went because I liked learning, there was a lecturer in Environmental Science who could link history, geography, literature and the environment. I could have listened to him for hours - but I usually had to pick the kids up!

grannyactivist Tue 28-Jan-14 00:05:45

When I'm teaching I almost always have a dictionary on the table and most of my students are intrigued because few of them have ever used one. sad

absent Tue 28-Jan-14 01:12:22

Perhaps one of my greatest inspirations for learning was my father. He came from the Netherlands as a small boy at the time of World War I so grew up bilingual but he had an amazing gift – and ear – for languages. In Germany, they assumed he was German or Austrian, in France, they thought he was French. He also spoke fluent Spanish and Italian, although those were the only two languages he ever confused, and competent Arabic, Japanese, Swedish, Afrikaans and several others that I have now forgotten. As a child, I just assumed that all adults spoke loads of languages and he encouraged me to have a go wherever we were on holiday, saying that it didn't matter if I got it wrong. I speak several European languages, two of them fluently, and can read several more, including Old English and Old Icelandic. I am planning to learn Maori as soon as I have the time as it is unlike anything I already know.

To my mother's annoyance, he never taught me Dutch. His reasoning was that only Dutch people spoke Dutch and they all spoke at least one and usually two other European languages. As a child I understood quite a bit of Dutch because my father's family chatted away in Dutch when they were together and when I was in Belgium I was surprised to discover that I could understand quite a lot of Flemish. I couldn't reply in Flemish, though.

janeainsworth Tue 28-Jan-14 04:39:15

When I was 8, our teacher, Miss Crossley, took a small group of us from our primary school in Stockport, by bus, to the Palace Theatre in Manchester to see the Festival Ballet perform The Nutcracker Suite.
I was enchanted, mainly by the music. I have loved classical music ever since.
But I wonder how many children from very ordinary backgrounds these days are offered such an experience.

ginny Tue 28-Jan-14 08:43:29

I have always read a lot and still do. I muddled through senior school, doing what had to be done but not really enjoying it much. Now, I am interested in all sorts of things. I think what makes the difference is that now I learn about what is relevant and enjoyable to me personally.