As a ten-year-old entering Grade Six I was pleased to find that I was to have a teacher, Mrs Waters, who had been my class teacher two years before and I was also pleased to find that she planned to continue sharing her obsession with the Greek Heroes and their wonderful adventure stories.
To add to the Greek Heroes stories, we briefly studied Ancient Greek history as an addition to our mainly British history lessons.
(No Australian History was even mentioned way back then).
Mrs Waters showed us pictures of the Greek gods and found pages containing artwork – mainly photographs of sculptures of the beautiful bodies of these mythical (mostly) men. One day she asked me, and another two girls, during lunch recess, to make a display of these pictures on the pin board at the back of the room. Mrs Waters supplied us with a mountain of black and white photographs of statues, figurines, carvings, fountains and other ornamental works. As we pinned them to the wall, we noticed that all the pictures showing manly sculptures had been carefully truncated at hip level. There were no legs and feet to be seen. Of course, we soon realised that it was more than legs and feet that were missing from these figures and we had a giggle at the thought of Mrs Waters slicing off the particular bits for fear of offending (or educating) our little minds.
But the giggling became uncontrollable when one of the girls went to throw some rubbish in the bin and discovered the missing photo parts showing all the amputated statue pieces. Here we had a pile of sculptured marble feet, legs –and genitals. Once outside, we divided them up to show and to share with the other girls.
We shrieked with laughter as we imagined Mrs Waters studiously chopping off the ‘rude’ bits.