Saturday, October 08, 2005

Looking for Ben Franklin...

This week begins a Fall break for my students. It seems like they just got to school-but midterms are already over and they get the next week off. One of them asked what I'm doing for the next week and unfortunately the library doesn't get a Fall break.

She then asked what Mrs. Pratt and I were planning for the weekend. Earlier that day I had read about an event to take place Sunday in Philadelphia, and the history geek in me got a little bit over-enthused discussing it.

Me:"The 300th birthday celebration of Benjamin Franklin is kicked off this weekend, with an actor portraying young Ben and recreating according to history, Oct.6th 1723,the day 17 year old Franklin arrived by boat to Philadelphia. Hungry, he bought big loaves of bread "Puffy rolls" and walked down Market Street with the bread sticking out from under his arms. Deborah Read, his future wife, saw him that day from her door and laughed at the ridiculous site he presented. This scene is going to be recreated- and the elder Benjamin Franklin will meet his younger self.Then they get to meet and talk with the crowd."

And as I was halfway through explaining all this historical background I realized my student got that look in her eye -the same look when people would drop in on the Addams family or something.She kind of nodded politely and backed out slowly not making eye contact. My cool factor is zero.

Tremendous historical geekiness aside, we hope to be in the city and enjoy the Philadelphia that Franklin helped shaped over 250 years ago. Heavy rains are hitting this weekend though. So I hope we don't see a soaked Franklin with soggy bread.

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