No, I Don’t Want To Be an Air Hostess

Dame Jane Morris Goodall DBE (Photo: Gabriela Herman for The New York Times)

When asked if it was unthinkable for a young woman to venture into the forests to be with the chimps, here’s what Jane Goodall had to share: 

No, I wasn’t brought up that way. Everybody else laughed at me, but Mom didn’t. Women weren’t scientists. When I was growing up, you could be a nurse, a missionary’s wife, a secretary, and then, oh, how exciting, you could be an air hostess.

A lot of people said to me, don’t you want to be an air hostess?

~ Jane Goodall (1934 – )
British primatologist, anthropologist, and UN Messenger of Peace

Musings and Impressions

The name Jane Goodall came to me through an ‘O’ Level exam paper, the visual text section of the 2014 Cambridge exam. Set within such a dull context, all black and white, Dr. Goodall seemed like just another scientist, until I discovered her yet again on, that website featuring classes from an august cast of experts including writers, actors, performers, a chef, an architect, a tennis star, and of course, with her inclusion, a primatologist.

In that short Masterclass trailer, I found in Jane Goodall a warm eloquence, spunk, and fighting spirit. There’s a joyful air about her, and a twinkling wit. She’s known to love giving people chimp hugs, and whenever she does, she could make you cry. It’s called the Jane effect. You become overwhelmed with joy.

The excerpt above is taken from a New York Times piece, Jane Goodall’s Unparalleled Life, in Never-Before-Seen Footage.

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