In the mid-1960s, when I was a student, I took my landlady, who was in her 70s, to the cinema to see a new film, The Sound of Music. Afterwards she was ecstatic, and on the bus home she entertained all the passengers with her enthusiasm. 这, considering her family’s war history, meant so much. Now I’m in my 70s, and each Christmas I look forward to seeing the film. Musicals are indeed “an important source of joy” (社论, 5 十二月).
Seer Green, 白金汉郡
Michael Rosen’s excellent letter (亲爱的纳迪姆·扎哈维, please sort out Ofsted’s lack of humanity, 4 十二月) reminds me of another instance of the fear aroused by school inspection. It comes from a 1940 logbook entry from a London school: “Monday am: bomb dropped on the field next door, children and staff calm. Monday pm: inspector visited, staff and children very agitated.”
Prof Colin Richards
Spark Bridge, Cumbria
Your article on deterring burglars at Christmas suggests leaving a radio on and playing barking dog noises (Money hacks, 6 十二月). It then suggests asking a friend or neighbour to put your bins out and back while you are away. But how many neighbours would stay friends if deafened for days by a non-stop blaring radio and intermittent mechanical barking?