I was in Marrakech once. Marrakech is the location of the summer palace of the Sultan. According to Koranic law, the sultan has to meet with his subjects each day to hear their complaints.
Because of the custom, a public square has been built outside of the palace. The square fills up every night at sundown. It's quite a show.
On this particular night, I sat in the public square, sipping a pastiche, watching people bartering for camels, monkeys, spices, perfumes.
Suddenly, the huge crowd parted, and a 6'8" man in indigo and saffron robes, with indigo dye from the robes tinted into his skin-a totally amazing looking man-appeared in my sight line.
He carried a large wicker basket and as he opened it people began to throw money inside.
I asked the waiter at our café who the man was, and I was told he was a Berber chief, and also the greatest storyteller in North Africa.
After the man's basket was filled with coins-he began to tell his stories.
He danced magnificently, and waved his arms wildly, and shouted to the heavens, and whispered lovingly to women, and to men.
And I watched this storyteller for nearly two hours, mesmerized, unable to look away.
And, and, I didn't understand a single word of Arabic that the man spoke. But I loved his stories anyway.
Why am I telling this story in a blog about getting our kids reading? Maybe I have a thought that our presentation of stories to our kids is kind of important. Do your kids ever see you act excited about the stories you read in books?
Just a thought.
Orginally published at iVillage.com