I am teaching Amy how to drive. She is my third driving student. : ) Every day we go out and practice a little bit. So far so good.
I often think about education, what it is and how to pursue it. In Married to Tolstoy I learned that:
Both parents gave the children lessons. Until special teachers were engaged for French, German, music, and Russian literature, Sonya taught all these subjects and dancing as well; Tolstoy arithmetic and, later, Greek.Sonya herself had been educated at home:
She loved literature, wrote short stories, showed talent for painting and music, and at sixteen passed a university examination that gave her a diploma as a teacher. Her essay was declared the best of the year. It was remembered, too, for hearing of her engagement (at eighteen), the professor wrote to Tolstoy: 'This is just the wife for you. She has a great flair for literature.'Indeed, besides bearing him thirteen children in twenty-six years, Sonya acted as her husband's secretary, copying out miles and miles of his manuscripts; in the case of War and Peace, seven drafts. (It is interesting to me that Robert Louis Stevenson's wife acted as his amanuensis, too.)
But, this is what I love most about the Tolstoy's married life (which here, again, is similar to the Stevensons'):
When at last the children had been put to bed, and the manuscript on which Sonya was working laid aside, husband and wife would side down to the piano and play duets far into the night, or read aloud some favourite book. Tolstoy gave Sonya her early lessons in English. He wanted her to be able to read Dickens, for many years his favourite writer, but the first book they read together was The Woman in White, by Wilkie Collins.
Now, that struck me as coincidental, since I, too, read The Woman in White last fall, just before I caught the Tolstoy bug. Somehow, I have never read anything by Charles Dickens. He keeps coming up for me as of late, so I am going to pursue him next. However, I won't be reading aloud with my husband. He would only fall asleep. ; )