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Down the rabbit hole

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13th-Feb-2015       Readers ( 721 )   0 Comments
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Lewis carroll :
Alice and her sister sat on the green grassy bank which was encircled by clumps of daisies. While her sister was busy reading a book, Alice began to feel very drowsy, as the book didn't seem to interest her at all.
Suddenly a white rabbit with pink eyes ran close by her. He stopped and said to himself, "Oh dear! Oh dear! I shall be late!" Then the rabbit actually took a watch out of its waistcoat pocket and gazed at it, and hurried on.
Alice nearly jumped in surprise, for she had never before seen a rabbit clad in a waistcoat with a pocket watch. Burning with curiosity, she ran across the field after it, and was just in time to see it pop down a large rabbit hole, under the hedge.
In another moment down went Alice after the rabbit, without a thought of how in the world she was ever going to get out of it.
The rabbit-hole went straight like a tunnel for some distance, and then dipped down so sharply and suddenly that Alice had no time to even think about stopping herself. And soon she found herself falling down into what seemed like a deep well.
She tried to look down and figure out where she was going to land, but it was too dark to see anything; then she looked at the sides of the well and noticed that they were surrounded by cupboards and book-shelves. Maps and pictures were hung upon pegs. Her eyes rested on a jar labelled "Orange Marmalade". But to her disappointment, it was empty. So she put it back into one of the cupboards as she fell past it.
"Well!" thought Alice to herself, " After such a fall as this, I shall think nothing of tumbling downstairs. How brave they'll all think me at home. Why, I wouldn't say anything about it, even if I fell off the top of the house."
Down, down, down. "Would the fall never come to and end? I wonder how many miles I've fallen by this time?" she said aloud, "I must be approaching the centre of the earth. Let me think-that would be four thousand odd miles down."
Probably Alice was trying to remember her Geography lessons.
"Yes-that's about the right distance," she said, "but then I wonder what latitude or longitude I've got to?" Alice made this statement without having the slightest idea what latitudes or longitudes were, but she thought they were lofty words and sounded grand to say.
Down, down, down, there was nothing else to do, so Alice soon began talking to herself again. "Dinah, my cat will miss me a lot tonight. I wonder if my people will remember her saucer of milk at tea time. Oh! how I wish she were with me!" Addressing her cat, Dinah, Alice said, "There are no mice in the air, I'm afraid, but you might catch a bat, who look so much like mice. But do cats eat bats, I wonder?" And here Alice began to feel sleepy but she continued to speak as if in a delirium. "Do cats eat bats? Do bats eat cats?" She felt she was dozing off and had just begun to dream of Dinah, to whom she said, "Now, Dinah, tell me the truth, did you ever eat a bat?" When suddenly, thump, thump! Down she came upon a heap of sticks and dry leaves, and the fall was over.
It was a soft landing for Alice. She jumped on to her feet in a moment and looked up to see darkness all around. Before her stood another long passage, through which hurried down the white rabbit.
Alice chased him like the wind, and was just in time to hear it say, as it turned a corner, "Oh, my ears and whiskers, how late it is getting!" She was close behind it, when she turned the corner, but the rabbit had vanished. She found herself in a long low hall, which was lit up by a row of lamps, hanging from the ceiling.
There were doors all round the hall, but they were all locked. Alice tried opening each one of them, but in vain. At last, she walked sadly down the middle, wondering if she could ever get out again.
Suddenly, she came upon a little three-legged table of solid glass, upon which lay a golden key.
Alice thought that it might belong to one of the doors of the hall; but alas! either the locks, were too large or the key was too small.
She, however, decided to try all the locks a second time. While 'doing so, she noticed a little door behind a low curtain.
It was no higher than fifteen inches. She tried the little golden key in the lock, and to her great joy and surprise, it fitted.
Alice pushed open the door and found that it led into a small passage, not much larger than a rat hole. She knelt down and looked along the passage, into the loveliest garden she had ever seen. No matter how much she longed to wander in that beautiful garden, she couldn't possibly get even her head through the doorway. She sighed to herself, /Oh, how I wish I could snap shut like a telescope!'"
She went back to the table, secretly hoping for another key or a book of rules for shutting people up like telescopes. But this time she was surprised to find a little bottle on it instead of the key. Tied round the neck of the bottle was a label which read, "Drink Me".
But the wise little Alice was not going to do that in a hurry, for she knew that it could be poisonous. She looked at it carefully. The bottle did not bear the label "Poison" anywhere. So Alice ventured to taste it. It tasted delicious and contained a mixed flavour of cherry tart, custard, pineapple, roast turkey, toffee and hot buttered toast. Slowly, she gulped down the whole bottle.
"What a curious feeling!" said Alice. "I must be shutting up like a telescope!"
And so it was indeed : she was only ten inches high, and her face brightened up at the thought that she could now go through the little door into the lovely garden.
She waited for a while. Finding that nothing more happened, she decided to go into the garden at once; but, alas for poor Alice! when she got to the door, she found she had forgotten the little golden key, and when she went back to the table for it, she found it out of her reach. She hopped, jumped and leapt in the air but still could not reach it. So she sat down and cried helplessly.
"Come, there is no use crying like that!" said Alice to herself sharply. Soon her eye fell on a little glass box that was lying under the table. She opened it to find a small cake in it, on which the words "Eat Me" were beautifully marked in currants.
"Why, I will eat it," said Alice boldly, "and if it makes me grow larger, I can reach the key; and if it makes me grow smaller, I can creep under the door; so either way I will get into the garden, and I don't care which happens!"
She took a bite of the cake and started expecting results almost immediately. But nothing really happened for she remained the same size.
Ever since Alice had landed in this strange place, she had got so used to miracles that it seemed quite dull and stupid for life to go on in the common way.
So she set to work, and very soon gobbled up the entire cake.
(Alice in Wonderland)

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