Assigned reading for school last week was Chaucer. In particular, I read "The Wife of Bath." This wasn't my first encounter with Chaucer, but I hadn't remembered it being so difficult to read. I'm going to guess that either my memory is faulty or that I read it translated from Middle English. Because, what was in my textbook that I got this time around? The original Middle English. And it wasn't an easy read.
I thought it was odd to get the reading in Middle English without any advice from the professor on how to wade through it, but I figured she had her reasons. So I charged ahead. I'm an English major, after all, and I am totally up to a challenge like this. I read the footnotes, and the odd word translated into my own English (frequently not the words I really needed translated), and found that reading it got easier the more time I spent with the language. Although I knew that I was missing things I was certainly able to understand it overall, and I looked online to read briefly what others had said about "The Wife of Bath." I almost finished the reading, too.
Then I got to class, and the professor mentioned that she'd sent us an e-mail with the translated text. At our puzzled expressions she asked "Did none of you check your e-mail?" Of course I did, and so had others. But it turns out that somehow that e-mail hadn't sent.
To top it off, I was apparently the only one who waded through it in Middle English rather than look for a translation online. Or at least, I'm the only one who admitted to it.
I'm really not sure what the moral of the story is. I guess it's either that I'm crazy enough to cheerfully do crazy assignments, or that I'm crazy enough not to question crazy assignments. Actually, is there a difference? Either way has the same end result, I suppose. *sigh* Oh well...
On the up side, at least I got to laugh at myself.
This isn't Chaucer, but I wanted to share a photo and this looks prettier. It looking prettier probably has something to do with the fact that it's easier to attack a text with highlighters and pen if I can really dig my teeth into it. And Beowulf was easier for me than Chaucer.