The Giraffe Schoolgirl

Way back in my first English conversation class for Japanese high school girls, we were talking about “free time” and how we like to spend it.

One of my students announced quite boldly that she liked to go to the school library, get a book on giraffes, and then sit there looking at the book while pretending she was a giraffe. The other girls gave her looks ranging from bemusement to contempt. Meanwhile, the girl had zoned out with a happy grin on her face, and we all realized she was pretending to be a giraffe at that very moment.

She kinda looked a bit like a baby giraffe too.

I pretty much fell in love with her that day.

Over a decade later, I like to think that she’s out there somewhere, still giraffing it up like a gangly motherfucker.

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