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 Post subject: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 24 Oct 2017, 00:23 
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This week’s discussion book is The Coming of Age of the Chalet School, first published in 1958 and covering the summer term following Excitements. The school has reached its twenty first birthday (according to EBD logic), and to celebrate, they visit the Tiernsee in groups for the first time since having to evacuate way back in Exile before the war. The Quartette accompany the prefects on their trip, and Jo and Mary-Lou have an adventure on the lake. Meanwhile, the Sale and school sports day are held, and there is tragedy in the air for Miss Bubb and Jessica Wayne’s stepsister Rosamund. Notable events:

Mary-Lou, Vi and Barbara, arriving at the Platz early for the new term, meet up and discuss the new term as Vi and Barbara report and unpack. We learn that Doris Hill, Primrose Trevoase and the Dawbarns will be coming out to the Platz from Glendower House, and the St Mildred’s girls will be moving in with the main school for the term so that the Old Girls coming for the Coming of Age celebrations can stay in their building.
The girls go to tea at Freudesheim, and Jo tells them that, as the school will be so full, the triplets will be day girls for the term, as will Nina Rutherford and her cousins. She asks Mary-Lou to break the news to Emerence that Margot will be a day girl for the term, and Mary-Lou reluctantly agrees.
The rest of the school arrives, and Mary-Lou breaks the news about Margot to Emerence, who is very disappointed. At Abendessen, Doris Hill catches up with the rest of Mary-Lou’s Gang, while Primrose Trevoase falls in with various members of Inter V and Vb. Heather Clayton notices that Yseult Pertwee is missing, and on looking does not see Ronny or Val either.
Later that evening, while helping Jessica Wayne to unpack, Mary-Lou learns that Jessica’s stepsister Rosamund’s condition has worsened, and Jessica is very worried about her. Mary-Lou urges her to write to Rosamund as much as possible with news from the school, and Jessica confides that she fears the worst. Mary-Lou tells her that in that case, it would be best for Rosamund.
The next morning at Frühstuck, Miss Annersley outlines that day’s timetable, and reveals that the Pertwees have gone to join their mother, who is seriously ill after having undergone an operation. When she sits down again, the staff discuss the news, and Miss Wilson tells them that Mrs Pertwee had put off having medical treatment in order to do her book tour on the Arthurian legends to make more money for the girls, and the trouble caught up with her in Boston. Corney Flower, who lives in a Boston suburb, has taken in the three girls and is keeping the school updated with the latest news on Mrs Pertwee. The school has been appointed the girls’ guardian if Mrs Pertwee dies.
After Prayers, Miss Annersley makes a few announcements. The chapels will cost around five thousand pounds each, and cheques towards them are still coming in from various Old Girls. The Russells will provide the altar for the Protestant one, and the Maynards will provide the Catholic one, and the Rutherfords are providing a bell which will serve both, as a thank offering for the improved health of Alixe, who is still in the San with TB. The Old Girls have also been sending in photos and details of their doings as per one of the previous term’s suggestions, and the big photograph has also been organised. The school will also be doing public exams for the first time since coming to Switzerland.
Miss Wilson then announces that the trips to the Tiernsee will begin the weekend after next, starting with the Second Forms, and so on every weekend up to the prefects, who will be going with the Quartette, much to their delight. She also reminds them that the Sale will be going on as usual, and that Tom has made another dolls’ house for it.
Prudence Dawbarn soon grows bored, and decides to try and liven up lessons a little. After observing Miss Ferrars and Miss Derwent’s lessons and deciding not to risk it, she tries her luck with Mlle Berné but only succeeds in annoying her. When Mary-Lou comes to take prep that evening, she makes a nuisance of herself, then finally tilts her chair, which gives way under her and sends her crashing to the floor, hurting the base of her spine. Mary-Lou sends her off to Matey, who gives her lotion and tells her off for tilting.
The prefects discuss the Sale, and wonder what to do about inviting representatives from St Mildred’s as well as one member of each form to be on the committee, as it would results in twenty nine members for it. Blossom also bemoans the lack of good tennis players to make up the Six, and wonders if she can use people from St Mildred’s as they are part of the school for that term.
The Committee hold their first meeting, and each form representative submits an idea for a Sale theme. Josette Russell, representing Va, initially comes to the meeting with no ideas to submit, but on hearing all the others, comes up on the spur of the moment with the idea of a Shakespeare Sale in order to prevent bringing shame on the form. In the end, this is the idea that the committee decides on. Elinor, going to write up the ideas on a blackboard, is furious to discover that the stick of chalk she had asked someone to fetch has been soaked in water and won’t write. The perpetrator turns out to be Norah Fitzgerald, who is made to come and apologise at the behest of her form representative, who was furious at the prank.
Blossom gets her wish to include St Mildred’s girls in the Tennis Six, and Julie Lucy, Katharine Gordon and Hilary Wilson are picked. Meanwhile, the Tiernsee trips begin.
Madge is the first guest to arrive for the celebrations, and on arriving at Freudesheim Jo gives her news of various Old Girls. Carla von Flugen lost her husband and baby during the war and was waitressing in Salzburg, but Jo sent Marie von Wertheim over to make her chuck the job and stay with her until the summer, when she will come to Freudesheim as Mother’s Help, replacing Maria Marani, who is getting married to the Embury boys’ tutor, Walter Maclaren. Meanwhile, Bianca di Ferrara is married with six children and living in Naples, and her family are going to present a statue of St Clare to the Catholic chapel in memory of Luigia. Sophie Hamel is keeping house for her widowed father, and her sister Berta is married with three children. Anita Rincini is teaching in Innsbruck and will be coming, but Giovanna – who at the beginning of the book was supposed to be coming to stay with Hilary Graves – can’t make it.
The Old Girls begin to arrive in earnest, and on the Thursday before the Sale lessons are ended so that they can break up into groups with the mistresses and current pupils. Mary-Lou, Vi, Hilary and Doris join Clem, Peggy and Bride, Tom Gay, Nita Eltringham, Daphne Russell, Nancy Chester, Miss O’Ryan, Miss Wilmot and Miss Ferrars on a trip down to Thun for swimming. While on the boat, they spot Miss Bubb boarding at Merligen, and Peggy says they ought to ask her to join them, from good manners if nothing else. She and Mary-Lou go over, but Miss Bubb rebuffs them. The three mistresses, however, notice that she looks starved, and remember that she has little money. Nancy Wilmot goes over and succeeds in inviting her to join them for coffee and cakes, which she surreptitiously turns into a petit déjeuner in order to make sure she gets a good meal. Later, when they are on the beach, she opens the door of the wrong changing hut by mistake and walks in on a woman with no hair, who squawks and grabs her wig, putting it on backwards in her haste.
The day of the Sale dawns, and Tom sends her usual dolls’ house; an Elizabethan black-and-white mansion. The competition is to guess which great historical event occurred in the year the house is supposed to be built (the year is engraved on the chimney breast of the banquet hall as 1577, and the event is Drake setting off to sail around the world). Jo goes round the various stalls, and while taking part in one competition finds herself sitting next to Miss Bubb. She is horrified to see how ill she looks, and when she stands up, she faints. She is taken away to the San in an ambulance, and Jack Maynard tells the Heads that she had starved herself in order to save money to stay in Switzerland, and has a bad heart and at least one poor lung, and will probably never leave Switzerland at all now.
The rest of the Sale proceeds, and Anita Rincini wins a teacloth embroidered by Sybil Russell, and states her intention of gifting it to Hilary, who in a corking EBDism, has had a baby girl that morning, despite the said baby apparently already being in existence earlier in the book. Miss Denny wins Tom’s dolls’ house, and donates it to the school to form the beginnings of a museum, which Joey at once proposes they call the Sarah Denny Museum. In all, the Sale makes exactly twice what it did last year, amounting to three hundred and six pounds, one shilling and tenpence.
The next day the photograph is taken, and Madge tells the girls that so far they have raised seven thousand six hundred and fifty seven pounds, fourteen shillings and tenpence towards the chapels, and have been promised sundry gifts including three windows for each chapel, the bell, two statues, two altars and a lectern. Simone tells Jo that she and André are selling some of the old jewellery he inherited and will use the money to donate a paten, chalice and vestments for the Catholic chapel.
Prudence Dawbarn once again decides to liven things up, and first lulls the staff and prefects into a false sense of security by behaving herself for a week, then goes into prep one evening while Blossom is on duty determined to cause mischief. She first coats her handkerchief in powdered ginger and pulls it out of her pocket, causing everyone nearby to sneeze. Blossom guesses what’s going on and fetches nasty-tasting lozenges, which she hands out to everyone affected. Prudence then surreptitiously slips a puppet onto her hand and succeeds in making first Rosamund Lilley and then Emerence laugh. Blossom spots her, confiscates the puppet and sends her out of the room, where she is discovered by Miss Wilson, who makes her apologise to Blossom and the form and relegates her to Junior status for a week.
The weekend for the prefects’ trip to the Tiernsee arrives, and they set off with Jo and Frieda. When they get off the mountain train at the Tiernsee, Jo goes to the nearby Gasthaus and engages their porter to pick up their luggage, and who turns out to be none other than Eigen Pfeiffen. They walk along to the Kron Prinz Karl, and Jo shows them the place where she once jumped right across a ditch and the lake path and landed in the Tiernsee itself. At the KPK, they are met by the same Herr Braun of the old days, who greets Jo rapturously.
After Kaffee they go to view the old Chalet buildings, now inhabited by the management of the hydro electric company which dammed the St Scholastika end of the lake. They return to the KPK in time to meet Simone and Marie, then after Abendessen go for a row on the lake before turning in for the night.
The next morning everyone gets up early and goes for a swim in the lake, then after Frühstuck they decide to visit the Tiernkirche. On the way, Jo tells the girls that she is going to get Jack to buy a holiday chalet in the area, as they have had an offer for Plas Gwyn and have accepted it, as they do not intend to return to Howells.
The next day it rains, so the party goes to Innsbruck, and Jo and Frieda take Sybil, Elinor and Mary-Lou to visit Herr and Frau Mensch senior. The following day they visit the Sonnalpe, and Jo makes the acquaintance of the new Head of the Sanatorium there, who now inhabits Die Rosen. He tells them that a friend of his, who owns the former St Scholastika’s building, wants to sell up, but he is unable to get him on the phone and Jo has to leave the question for the time being.
That evening, Jo takes Mary-Lou out onto the lake in a boat, and asks her to warn the other prefects not to spread it around the school that the Quartette allowed the girls to use their Christian names only while on the trip, explaining that they really only allowed it in order to help Frieda forget all her worries over Gretchen the past few years. Mary-Lou agrees to warn the others.
During their conversation, the boat gets caught in a current and they lose an oar. Jo manages to guide the boat over to where the Dripping Rock is, and they disembark and climb up. As they near the top, a passing man stops to help, and Jo is delighted to discover that he is Herr Helfen, who taught the violin at the school. He also happens to be the owner of St Scholastika’s, and she tells him then and there that she wishes to buy it. He escorts the two of them safely back to the KPK just as a thunderstorm breaks.
Back at school, Jessica is sent for to go home as Rosamund has only a few days left to live. Mary-Lou is summoned to help her back and accompany her to Basle, and she helps to convince Jessica to be as happy and cheerful as she can to help Rosamund through the last few days. Two days after Jessica arrives home, Rosamund dies peacefully in her sleep.
When Mary-Lou arrives back from Basle, very grave over the Jessica situation, Miss Annersley tells her confidentially that she will be the next Head Girl. The next day when she rejoins lessons, the other prefects tell her that the entire school will vote for Jo’s special prize. Later that evening, the vote is held, and Jo does not reveal the winner, but declares that it was a unanimous vote.
The term ends with the school sports day, and the winner of Jo’s prize is announced as Mary-Lou.

Phew!

So, thoughts on the school’s twenty first? What do you think of the various celebrations, the Sale, the Tiernsee trip, the sports day? Thoughts on the reappearance of old characters? What about the Jessica/Rosamund and Miss Bubb subplots? Prudence Dawbarn’s pranks? Mrs Pertwee’s illness?

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 24 Oct 2017, 02:17 
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I'm definitely a sucker for updates on old girls, so I really enjoyed that part of the book, and the Coming of Age festivities.

I feel sorry for the triplets, being bounced to day girls during such an exciting term. Why doesn't Joey take in visitors, and let the girls stay with the school? Between the girls' beds, plus the boys' rooms and their regular guest rooms, they could take in a number of people. And Joey choosing to go to back to her beloved Tyrol for the first time with the prefects (and Mary-Lou) rather than her family must have been disappointing, too.

Joey does get a bit hyper during the visit to the Tiernsee, which I guess is understandable. It is nice to see the Quartette together for the first time since Rescue. I'm not sure why she had to take Mary-Lou out in a boat at night to have a chat with her, but it does seem a reversion to schoolgirl Joey in impulsiveness without thinking through the consequences (like getting stranded and the other people worrying).

The tennis stuff is a bit odd - if they include St Mildred's in the Chalet tennis six, then that eliminates their main competitor for matches. I do like the enthusiastic plans for a Sale committee, and then realizing just how many people would be involved.

Looking over the plot summary, this book is a little bit like Excitements, in that it's a series of episodes without a strong central character.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 24 Oct 2017, 07:42 
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I love Tyrol and I love updates on Old Girls, so I also love that aspect of things. And it's always nice to have a visit from Madge.

This is the book in which Herr Mensch rises from the dead! In Problem, he'd recently died. Now, Joey & co go to visit him and Frau Mensch! I always think it was rather rude of all 4 of them (Frieda, OK, but the others should have gone another time) to go off to make a personal social visit, dragging Mary-Lou, Elinor and Sybil with them, and leave the others to their own devices, when they were meant to be showing them round :roll: .

I agree that Joey should have gone there with the triplets. I think EBD wanted Mary-Lou heavily involved, and I think it's a shame that Joey and Mary-Lou are allowed to take over the visit to Tyrol. It should have been Sybil's big storyline. It must have been very emotional for Sybil to revisit the place where Madge and Jem met, got together, got married and set up the School and the San, and where she herself was born; but she hardly gets a look in.

It's a minor storyline, but I'm glad that Maria Marani gets a happy ever after. She's never a major character, but we know that she had a breakdown after her father's death, and it's strongly hinted that she's suffered from bouts of depression ever since, but that her mental health really improves once she meets Walter. It's nice to catch up on so many of the other Old Girls as well.

The Rosamund storyline is a bit odd, probably because it's never clear exactly what her condition is. We were originally told that she had a normal life expectancy, but then she dies a year later.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 24 Oct 2017, 11:45 
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I love this catch up of everything too and I never really noticed this before, but that's really sad :

Alison H wrote
It should have been Sybil's big storyline. It must have been very emotional for Sybil to revisit the place where Madge and Jem met, got together, got married and set up the School and the San, and where she herself was born; but she hardly gets a look in. [color=#4040FF][/color]

Also Carla Von Flugen coming to the Platz as Mother's help to Joey , I don't remember ever hearing that mentioned again :roll:


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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 24 Oct 2017, 11:55 
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Also it's a very expensive term, the sale, the weekend away and the Chapels, and that's aside from their usual spends of stamps, collections and any other necessities. You would think the sale could have been moved , and it's also the exam term, Was this the first use of Hermione's Time Turner in operation :D


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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 24 Oct 2017, 13:33 
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jennifer wrote:
I'm definitely a sucker for updates on old girls, so I really enjoyed that part of the book, and the Coming of Age festivities.

I feel sorry for the triplets, being bounced to day girls during such an exciting term. Why doesn't Joey take in visitors, and let the girls stay with the school? Between the girls' beds, plus the boys' rooms and their regular guest rooms, they could take in a number of people. .



The concept of putting visitors into dormitories shared by current pupils is odd all round. It might be all right if you have just recently left school and were sharing with your friends but not inserting adults into random cubicles. I suppose they might have shifted people round to free up a specific dormitory for visitors but that's still not a very comfortable situation if you are used to privacy and you don't really know the people you are with. (Would the visitors have had to have cold baths in the morning?!)


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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 24 Oct 2017, 13:56 
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But wouldn't it have been more bringing the Millies back to live in dormitories at the school proper, to allow the old girls their rooms at St Mildred's - which presumably were single or at least only 2 or 3 sharing, rather than actual dormitories ...?

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 24 Oct 2017, 17:05 
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Alison H wrote:
Now, Joey & co go to visit him and Frau Mensch! I always think it was rather rude of all 4 of them (Frieda, OK, but the others should have gone another time) to go off to make a personal social visit, dragging Mary-Lou, Elinor and Sybil with them, and leave the others to their own devices, when they were meant to be showing them round :roll:


Just checked - it's only Frieda and Joey who go to the Mensches (along with the younger representatives) - presumably the others stay with Simone and Marie

Though to be fair at 17/18 I think Mary-Lou, Elinor and Sybil got a raw deal, presably they wanted to see Innsbruck not make polite with strangers


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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 24 Oct 2017, 19:20 
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abbeybufo wrote:
But wouldn't it have been more bringing the Millies back to live in dormitories at the school proper, to allow the old girls their rooms at St Mildred's - which presumably were single or at least only 2 or 3 sharing, rather than actual dormitories ...?


This was my understanding too:

Quote:
'Well, you know what's happening this term. St Mildred's have had to turn out to leave somewhere for all our visitors to go, and the school is crammed full to the last inch of space.'


I'm actually impressed at just how many events EBD managed to cram into one book - I thought I was never going to get to the end of that summary last night! The EBDisms in this one were glaring though - Lois Graves being born twice, Anita Rincini being substituted for Giovanna as Hilary's guest, and this corker at the end of the Sale:

Quote:
'Supper tonight will be at twenty o'clock, and will be only milk or lemonade and biscuits. Prayers will come immediately after, and then everyone under fifteen will go up to bed at once. The rest will go at half past nineteen.'


And I was scratching my head for a good five minutes over this one, wondering if I was missing something:

Quote:
Madge Russell came to take Rosalie's place, and her eyes were shining with excitement. 'Girls!' she said, her clear voice ringing out with triumph, 'I'm proud of you all! The bank has sent up the figures for the Chapels' Fund to date, and we've collected seven thousand six hundred and fifty seven pounds, fourteen shillings and tenpence - more than two thirds of the sum we aimed at.'
...
'I should like to add that Mr Flower, father of Cornelia Flower whom a good many of you will remember, has promised that when we get our ten thousand pounds he will make it up to twelve thousand, so that we can have the pulpits and something towards the seating.'


Then on the very next page:

Quote:
'Of course,' Joey remarked to her three great friends that afternoon when they were strolling along the Hoheweg in Interlaken for the last time before they said goodbye to Marie for the next two or three weeks, 'we're lucky. We've had three girls at the school whose fathers were millionaires. Corney Flower's an heiress in her own right, and she sent us ten thousand dollars, and Evvy Lannis did the same. And Emerence Hope's dad weighed in with a mighty cheque. Actually, we got the first twenty thousand pounds in one fell swoop, more or less.'


So how come they only have 7k in the Chapels' Fund when Jo outright says not three paragraphs later that they've racked up over 20k? :dontknow:

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 24 Oct 2017, 20:39 
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Aquabird wrote:
So how come they only have 7k in the Chapels' Fund when Jo outright says not three paragraphs later that they've racked up over 20k? :dontknow:


Joel's legendary problems with Maths? Or confusion over the exchange rate...............?! :lol:

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 24 Oct 2017, 20:50 
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I would think the exchange rate. $20,000 would have been about £7,000 in the 1950s (those were the days!!). Maybe Joey didn't realise that, and Madge had to explain it to her :lol: .

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 24 Oct 2017, 21:08 
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I thought what was meant was that the school (i.e. students via donations and the sale etc) had a target of £10k as their part of thr whole, but that this wasn't all of the costs, and other fund raising was being done in the background...?

But maybe that doesn't make sense either?


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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 24 Oct 2017, 22:11 
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That's how that bit reads to me - that the girls and staff were going to raise £10,000, and then Mr Flower was going to put in £2,000. But then what happened to the money from Evvy, Corney and Mr Hope :?? And £7,000 seems a lot to raise from a school sale of work and donations from pocket money even now, never mind in the 1950s. None of it makes very much sense :? :roll:.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 24 Oct 2017, 22:41 
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I did think it might be an exchange rate thing that was causing the discrepancy, it was just the fact that Jo specifies they've raised twenty thousand pounds that had me puzzled. They need £10k just for the two basic buildings, and then various people are donating stuff like altars, windows, statues, etc., so they probably didn't need much more after Mr Flower's donation to have both chapels fully kitted out.

Incidentally, what were the poor people at Glendower House doing to celebrate? One hopes they too were getting trips to the Tiernsee, massive donations from wealthy ex-pupils, a state visit from Madge and so on and so forth, but judging by how desperate everyone seems to be to move from there to the Swiss branch, I doubt it. They really do seem like second class citizens...

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 25 Oct 2017, 01:27 
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It must have been awkward for the girls at St Mildred's. They would either have to commute back and forth to St. Mildred's every day (would they have a common room at the main school? or a place to do work? or practice space?), or they'd end up basically absorbed back into the school they just left (but with much higher fees). And for the girls who *weren't* CS alumnae, it would be a term of excitement about a milestone for a school they hadn't attended.

By the way, I recommend AlisonH's drabble on the SDL.

http://www.sallydennylibrary.co.uk/view ... hp?sid=138

Karen has left, the school, her replacements keep quitting, and Miss Edwards, peeved over being left out of the Coming of Age stuff, sends them a strong-willed socialist union organizer. :D

I forgot that the Coming of Age celebrations are separate from the Sale and Sports day. That is a lot to fit into a term - I'm surprised they didn't cancel the sale/sports part, or combine it with the coming of age.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 25 Oct 2017, 01:38 
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I know we are meant to think the prefects were overjoyed at having Joey & Co spending the Tirol weekend with them but were they really?

They were 17 and 18 year olds. If they had been with staff there might have been the chance of a bit of time away from supervision but instead they had Joey breathing down their necks every second and bossing them around. She was also nearly of another generation. When I was 17 I thought people of 19 were ancient!

It might have been okay for ML who knew Joey well but what about the rest? Would it have been fun for Sybil having auntie around the whole time on such an occasion? Even ML said Joey could be overwhelming.

I wonder, too, was this why EBD had Vi suddenly made a prefect near the end of the school year when she realised Vi would not otherwise be on the weekend?

I have not checked the book but I also seem to remember Simone and her latest baby had been staying with Marie and Marie and Simone then drove together to join up with the rest. What happened to the baby? Presumably still at the castle and Simone going back for it as opposed to it sent back to France with nurse?

A shame Jo did not go with Madge or the triplets and the prefects left to go with their own forms.

Looking forward to reading Alison's drabble.


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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 25 Oct 2017, 09:42 
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If each chapel was to cost £5000 to build and they have already raised £27,000 then surely they have more than enough already to build and furnish them?

I never understood why Joey had to take ML out on the boat at night except of course EBD wanted them to have their adventure. A quiet five minutes on land would have served the same purpose.

Maybe the triplets were quite happy that Joey didn't go with their form, they would have had to be on their best behaviour. :wink:


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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 25 Oct 2017, 22:48 
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Terrygo wrote:
If each chapel was to cost £5000 to build and they have already raised £27,000 then surely they have more than enough already to build and furnish them?

I never understood why Joey had to take ML out on the boat at night except of course EBD wanted them to have their adventure. A quiet five minutes on land would have served the same purpose.

Maybe the triplets were quite happy that Joey didn't go with their form, they would have had to be on their best behaviour. :wink:


Probably. The prefects were landed instead


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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 26 Oct 2017, 00:27 
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How they would view the trip to the Tiernsee with the Quartette would probably vary a lot from person to person. For someone like Mary-Lou, who knows Joey well and considers her a cool adult, and who would have heard lots of stories of the others from Joey, it would have been great fun when the four adults decided to let loose and pretend they were schoolgirls.

For someone like Elionor Pennell, who doesn't know Joey well, and who has never met the rest of them, it could be weird and awkward, and all Joey's personal connections and stories and enthusiasms could have been tedious and distracting, on what would be her last half-term expedition.

For Sybil, it would have been complex, at best. She'd have vague memories of the place, plus lots of family stories and reminiscences and sorrows. Going on a school trip, rather than with family or on her own, could be difficult on it's own, as none of the other girls have any emotional reaction to the area. Going with Joey in full manic mode, particularly given Joey's attitude towards Sybil when she was younger, could be really hard.

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 Post subject: Re: Books: The Coming of Age of the Chalet School
PostPosted: 26 Oct 2017, 04:28 
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Aquabird wrote:
I did think it might be an exchange rate thing that was causing the discrepancy, it was just the fact that Jo specifies they've raised twenty thousand pounds that had me puzzled.


How about this explanation? Joey misspoke and meant 20,000 dollars. That translates to 7,000 pounds.

So when Madge says the fund was at "seven thousand six hundred and fifty seven pounds, fourteen shillings and ten pence", the 7,000 pounds was the various gifts and the six hundred odd was from the staff and student donations etc. Because there is almost no way they could have raised that large amount from staff and student donations and the sale alone within the time allowed.

And the Flower family was insanely generous. Not only did Cornelia give 10,000 dollars but her father offers a further 2,000 pounds. I do hope all these generous benefactors were given some kind of recognition within the chapels as a token.

Quote:
It must have been awkward for the girls at St Mildred's. They would either have to commute back and forth to St. Mildred's every day (would they have a common room at the main school? or a place to do work? or practice space?), or they'd end up basically absorbed back into the school they just left (but with much higher fees). And for the girls who *weren't* CS alumnae, it would be a term of excitement about a milestone for a school they hadn't attended.


I suppose non CS alumni just join in and pretend they are enjoying themselves! :D

One would hope that the St Mildreds girls had a dorm to themselves rather than being mixed in with strangers. And you could only really put them in with sixth form girls anyway because I can't see girls in their late teens/early 20s being OK with a) a middle school bedtime and regime and b) have Matey doing dorm inspection.

And yes, if I had paid for my daughter to have specialised training and a room rather than a dorm, I would wonder about the fast one the school had just pulled on me.

The house competition is just silly. There is no guarantee whatsoever that only ONE person would guess the 'great event', and then what do you do? A Solomon act and split the house in pieces? Or put the names into a hat and pull one out?

And the 'unanimous' vote for ML is impossible. It just is. Even China and North Korea would have said 98% of the vote :D

Quote:
I know we are meant to think the prefects were overjoyed at having Joey & Co spending the Tirol weekend with them but were they really?

They were 17 and 18 year olds. If they had been with staff there might have been the chance of a bit of time away from supervision but instead they had Joey breathing down their necks every second and bossing them around.


ML calls for cheers when it's announced that Joey and Co will be joining the prefects so I guess the rest just fall in line, though I like to think a few of the prefects grimaced.

Joey does boss them round a bit that trip and it would have been nice if she at least asked the girls if there was anything they particularly wanted to see.

And the trip to Frieda's parents is a bit silly. Poor Sybil, ML and Elinor get out of going around Innsbruck which would have been much more attractive at that age, and have to make small talk with strange adults.

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