a lot like Eustace Scrubb

For those of you who are familiar with The Chronicles of Narnia, by C.S. Lewis, you will be familiar with the Voyage of the Dawn Treader as well.

The first time I read the story I hated the character of Eustace Scrubb--who is introduced in Dawn Treader; a cousin to the Pevensies--even though Lewis gives him an opportunity for redemption. I disliked his curmudgeonly behavior from the get-go, and disliked his disbelief in Aslan. (I was however highly entertained by his journal entries.)

And then, I reread the series this fall and was amazed and awed, upon closer inspection, at Eustace's transformation from dragon back into boy (after some number of mishaps) I fell in love with the character of Eustace this second time around.

For those of you who don't know the story: Eustace is turned into a dragon and then after a series of events, finally becomes a more humble person, which then allows him to open himself up for a transformation. He is turned back into a boy with Aslan's help; in the story, literally peeling off the layers of dragon to reveal the layers of boy underneath. With Aslan's help he is able to peel off the bad junk to reveal the real Eustace.

(Eustace telling of Aslan's help)
"he peeled the beastly stuff right off - just as I thought I'd done it myself the other three times, only they hadn't hurt - and there it was lying on the grass: only ever so much thicker, and darker, and more knobbly-looking than the others had been. And there was I as smooth and soft as a peeled switch and smaller than I had been. Then he caught hold of me - I didn't like that much for I was very tender underneath now that I'd no skin on - and threw me into the water. It smarted like anything but only for a moment. After that it became perfectly delicious... "

For some reason I have been thinking of this part of the story a lot lately. I think in part because I am about to start a new chapter in my life and of course, with change comes transformation, "fo sho." I think too, that the last few years have definitely been dragonish for me; self absorbed and one track minded as I did Grad School and then have had to focus on finding a job, post school. I am ready to start getting to the core, to dig deeper and...I guess what I am trying to say, dear readers, is that I may soon have to change the title of my blog to: Misadventures of the Monster Farmer-Librarian.

The Farm, which I always speak of, has kindly re-hired me (I worked there 2003-2006, until I left for Grad School and Librarian adventures). I am going to be co-assistant managing the Farm's Kitchen. And, no, I am not giving up on being a Librarian. I think I am going to start volunteering at local libraries and then eventually move up to something part-time.

The Farm is a therapeutic community in Massachusettes, which helps adults with mental illness learn how to better manage their mental illness (i.e. schizophrenia, bi-polar disorder, depression, schizo-effective illnesses) and rebuild themselves in a confident and life sustaining fashion. The Farm is an actual working farm, about 650 acres, sporting its own dairy production: cows, chickens and acres of gardens all things which the Farm utilizes. The Farm also owns and operates a greasy spoon diner, very popular with the locals and New Yorkers and Bostonians alike.

When I left the farm in 2006 I knew that I would one day return, so while I am sad to leave my family behind: my Mom, sister A1, bro-in-law M, niece and nephew Monsters S & A and brother A3, and a slew of good friends, including best friends K and L, I know it is time to move on. There is no easy way, it is like being torn in two in some ways, but, that's life.

So, dear readers...stay tuned for my moving misadventures...


Anonymous said…
Good luck with your plans, Monster! It sounds like you will be working in beautiful surroundings.

I hope everything goes well with your move.
Rebecca said…
Ohhh! I completely remember Eustace! I remember being so disturbed by the imagery of the dragon's skin. Being 10 years old, I never got the metahpors of course. Interesting post for us young readers.

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