Wednesday, November 1, 2017

The Time and The Place--Notes

Locations: (5) Kate meets Hugh while hiking  on a high bank overlooking the Motor Highway on the Cashmere Hills, above the Canterbury Plains, (6) they stop in a layby on top of the watershed that divides Lyttelton Harbor from the Plains with a scenic look-out, (11) St. Enoch's is in Kahikatea Valley, (13) Victoria Park is above the school and her home, (26) Ken the Fink's mother lives in Timaru, (35) Hugh and Kate travel to Oamaru to deliver Roddy home to his father after his mother dies, (67) Hugh runs her out to Paekakariki with a picnic hamper during the teaching conference, (68) on this same trip they see Kapiti, the island bird sanctuary,

You, me, a bird sanctuary.
What could go wrong?


(69) the Rector tells her he taught at a school not far from Slough, England

Literary references: (10) There is an inscription under the cross-beam of the eatery they stop at: "Jog on, jog on the footpath way and merrily hent the stile-a, A merry heart goes all the day--your sad tires in a mile-a." (18) He says to her, "A Daniel come to judgement!...O wise young judge!", (46) Kate is reading a book and quotes a character asking, "Is yon lad a man to ride the water with, lassie?" (55) I suspect Essie is quoting herself when she has Kate quote a poem: "No moon? But overhead the stars are bright! No moon? What need have we of heavenly light When you blue eyes, like moonlit skies Are burning bright?" and then she thinks of the Victorian-era Robert Browning poem, "Never the time, the place and the loved one--all together!"

Victorians were the first to discover that
the forehead was an erogenous zone.

(56) "If 'twere done...'twere well it were done quickly.", (60) the Rector references the Old Testament figure of Methuselah when speaking of his age, (61) the boys call the Rector 'Bulldog Drummond', (93) They see the play The Middle Watch, (120) Hugh tells her he likes her a little disordered and quotes Herrick's poem Delight in Disorder, (125) He quotes Shakespeare: "Methinks the lady doth protest too much." (137) The line I always think of when I think of this book is from Kipling "And he learned about women from her!" (147) He announces their engagement to the whole school by singing 'Where'er You Walk' followed by 'A Gordon for Me' (173) Kate laughs when Della tries to tell her that Hugh and she are lovers. Kate references the Old Testament story of Potipher's Wife, (187) Kate tells Ken that she was in love with the Rector quite early on. "When the true gods come, the false gods go."
Ladies and gentlemen,
The moment you've been waiting for...
The pride of Easter Island!

New Zealand: (20) Ken is a former All Black rugby player, (28) Kate draws the 'child allowance' for Beth, just as every parent in the country does, (37) on their way to deliver Roddy to his father, Hugh points out the sod fences built by early pioneers, (38) Roddy shows them his Meccano set, (43) The Rector wants the school to have a soccer team as well as rugby for the students whose parents come from out of the country, (47) Ken has 'footer' practice, (76) Kate references articles that the marriage council publishes, (106) piggy-back is called pick-a-back, (117) Ken doesn't miss a rugby match, especially ones that play for the Ranfurly shield, (119) Kate collects 'wattle' or mimosa for the Rector's rooms, (134) Kate thinks that Hugh would prefer a table cloth to 'table-mates' or place-mats


  1. The Winter’s Tale
    Jog on, jog on the footpath way and merrily hent the stile-a, A merry heart goes all the day--your sad tires in a mile-a.

    Unlike Betty and Essie heroes and heroines, I do not recognize let alone quote Advanced Shakespeare, only perhaps Basic Shakespeare of the To be or not to be/All the perfumes of Arabia variety. And while good ol' Will takes up space on one of my bookshelves, I am grateful for the internet where the text comes with explanations for things like hent a stile-a / your sad tires in a mile-a.


    'It seems I am to be interrupted once more.' He turned away. 'I have a strong feeling of sympathy for your Mr Browning—did he not complain: “ Never the time and the place and the loved one altogether”?'

    Re.: (69) the Rector tells her he taught at a school not far from Slough, England

    Slough — rhymes 🐄 cow

    The doctor drove through Maidenhead and on to Slough and then, to her surprise, instead of taking the ring road to the north of London, he drove to his house.

    He drove away from Harwich on a dismal grey morning, he had had breakfast on board and he didn't intend to stop until he reached Cressy's home, he had studied the map and took the road through Hatfield, Watford and Slough, cutting out London entirely, to join the M3 and later on the A303.

  3. THE MIDDLE WATCH play by Ian Hay and Stephen King-Hall
    The Middle Watch, 1929
    (filmed in 1930, 1940 and 1958)

    Film 1930, Synopsis by Hal Erickson:
    A literal adaptation of the popular stage play by Ian Hay and Stephen King-Hall, specialists both in maritime comedies, The Middle Watch stars Owen Nares as Captain Maitland, skipper of a battleship bound for the high seas. Not only is Maitland a by-the-book disciplinarian, but he's also an avowed woman-hater. Unbeknownst to the captain, two pretty damsels, Mary (Jacqueline Logan) and Fay (Dodo Watts), have been sneaked aboard by their sailor boyfriends. Upon learning the truth, poor Maitland has a devil of a time trying to keep the girls hidden from the Lord Admiral. The Middle Watch was remade as a Jack Buchanan vehicle in 1939, then again in 1955.

    Novel (1930)
    The Saturday Review of Literature, October 18, 1930
    To turn a play into a novel is not easy, especially when the play was a farce.
    [...] one recognizes that this would have been amusing if you had seen it rather than that it is amusing as you read it.

    Major General John Hay Beith, CBE (17 April 1876 – 22 September 1952) was a British schoolmaster and soldier, but he is best remembered as a novelist, playwright, essayist and historian who wrote under the pen name Ian Hay.

    Beith "went up to St John's College, Cambridge, where he read Classics, distinguished himself at rugby, and captained the college boat club."

    Stephen King-Hall (21 January 1893 – 2 June 1966) was a British naval officer, writer, politician and playwright.
    He was invested as a Knight Bachelor in 1954 and was created Baron King-Hall, of Headley in the County of Hampshire (Life Peer) on 15 January 1966.

  4. Excerpts:
    They were still wearing their afternoon party frocks, which, however, in the present phase of feminine fashions, were quite suitable for evening wear. Something pink and something pale grey: this much the Captain had time to observe while the solicitous Commander was handing the ladies over the coaming of the doorway. The pink was introduced first.
    " Captain Maitland ; Miss Eaton."
    This was Randall's one, the Captain decided, as he shook a clinging hand.
    " Captain Maitland ; Miss Carlton. "
    The Captain found himself shaking a very different hand — slim and vigorous — and looking into smiling brown eyes. He blinked; then asked : — "Which is the chaperon?"
    " I am," replied the grey, with a friendly smile. "Why?"
    " I just wanted to be sure."
    The Captain smiled back. Too late, he had intended to scowl.
    " Can you — I mean, will you — sit down?" he continued, indicating the sofa. The two intruders subsided side by side, and furtively joined hands under the cover of Mary's skirt, which was slightly more adequate to the purpose than Fay's. They squeezed fingers ecstatically. This was lots of fun, especially as their custodians were plainly quite at sea as to how to set about their duties. The Captain gazed appealingly at the Commander, as if asking what the next move was to be.
    " Cigarettes ! " suggested that resourceful officer, out of the corner of his mouth.
    " Of course, of course ! " The Captain bustled to the desk, and took up a silver box.
    " Do you smoke? " he asked Fay.
    " No, thank you," said Fay, who as a prospective wife and matron had embarked that afternoon upon an inclusive course of all the domestic virtues.
    " Miss Carlton ? Only gaspers, I'm afraid."
    " I smoke everything that burns, thank you," said Miss Carlton, smiling and helping herself.

    The Captain rose from the sofa, and joined his guest at the table.
    " You are different," he said, with a solemnity of manner which plainly implied that he was saying something entirely new and original. " I have never met any one quite like you in all my life before ."
    Mary Carlton looked up at him, with a smile of simple gratification.
    " Hand out some more of that talk," she said ; " and if I cry for help, take no notice ! "
    " I think," continued the Captain, warming to his work, " that you are an exceptionally wonderful person."
    " That's great ! Continue."
    The Captain came a step nearer. " May I call you Mary ? "
    " Sure ! "
    " I wouldn't ask, of course," continued the foolish man, unable to let well alone ; " only I'm nearly old enough to be your "
    Mary looked up at him, and shook her head. " That's not so good," she said. " An old one. Don't pull the Daddy stuff ; it's not your style. Let's forget it." She smiled forgivingly.

  5. 174
    which screened the guilty secret — or secrets — of H.M.S. Falcon.
    " I'll look, sir," said the the Commander hastily. " You try from your side again." He almost pushed the Admiral back into the bathroom; then softly locked the door upon him, and tiptoed to the door of the girls' cabin. They met him on the threshold.
    " Now what ? " whispered Mary.
    " You must shift billets — quick ! Bring your clothes, and for the Lord's sake don't forget anything ! "
    " But where ? "
    Rattle, rattle, rattle.
    "All right, sir; I'm coming," panted the Commander, dashing into the cabin as the obedient ladies dashed out, with their clothing in their arms. " One moment, sir. There's some bedding in the way here."
    Pillows and blankets cascaded out of the cabin door into the lobby These were retrieved by Ogg, who had gloomily decided that he might as well be hanged for a sheep as a lamb.
    " Yes, sir, I thought as much. There is a key here, stuck in the lock. I'll pull it clear in a moment."
    " Well, for heaven's sake hurry up ! " said a muffled voice. "I'm freezing in this place."
    " I'll get the sentry's bayonet, sir, to use as a lever."
    The Commander emerged from the cabin. " Sentry, give me your bayonet," he said loudly. Then, in a whisper to the girls : — " Now, you two, bolt into the spare cabin, and lock yourselves in. Both doors ! "
    " What the devil are you doing, Commander? " roared an exasperated voice.
    Once more the Commander dived into the sleeping-cabin door, like a harlequin through a trap.
    " Here I am, sir. I've got the bayonet. You pull, and I'll push."
    Rattle, rattle, rattle.
    " The damned thing won't move ! "
    " It's coming, sir. Now then. One, two , three ! "
    In the turmoil of the tug-of-war which now ensued Ogg was able to escort his two overwrought charges to their new quarters. Having there possessed himself of the Admiral's clothing and suitcase, he carried these into the other cabin, where the Commander was still going through the motions of wrestling with the door into the

    stay here. I guess my chaperon, Mr. Ogg, would prefer it," she added tactfully.
    The Captain nodded. " Perhaps you're right," he said. " Let's sit down for a moment. We'll enthrone you on the rum-cask."
    " Fine ! " said Mary. " Give me a boost."
    " Haifa minute! " The Captain picked up a pillow which was lying outside the bathroom door — probably dropped by Marine Ogg on one of the removals.
    " We might as well be comfortable," he said. He laid the pillow on top of the rum-cask, and, picking Mary up in his arms, deposited her on top of the pillow.
    " I guess my Mr. Ogg couldn't object to this," said Mary, clasping her arms round her knees, and balancing herself happily. " This is lots of fun. I'll say so. Listen, Aylwin ! "
    The Captain promptly came a step nearer. " Mary ! "
    " Gee, what a name ! " Mary gave a clear little laugh.
    The Captain glanced nervously towards the Admiral's door.
    " I'm sorry ! But listen ! I'm just crazy to know what you have back of you that can fit in with a name like that. It suggests moated granges and knights in armour and things like to me.

  6. Oh this is fantastic! Thank you so much! I loved these Middle Watch exerpts and thank you very much for unearthing the Shakespeare quote.