"Why do I have to go to school?"
"To learn things, of course."
"What sort of things?" asked Pippi.
"All kinds of things," said the officer. "Lots of useful things, like the multiplication tables, for instance."
"I've been fine for nine years without any pluttification tables," said Pippi. "And I'm sure I can manage in the future, too."
"Yes, but think how sad it will be for you to be so ignorant. What about when you grow up and someone happens to ask you what the capital of Portugal is and you can't answer?"
"Of course I can answer," said Pippi. "I'll just answer like this: if you're so desperately anxious to know what the capital of Portugal is, then by all means write a letter to Portugal and ask them!"
"That's possible. Occasionally I might lie awake at night and wonder over and over: what on earth is the capital of Portugal? But you can't expect that things will always be fun, " said Pippi, as she went into a handstand and stayed there for a moment. "Besides, I've been to Lisbon with my pappa, " she went on as she stood upside down, because that didn't stop her from talking.
We are thoroughly enjoying this beautiful edition of Pippi Longstocking, gorgeously illustrated by Lauren Child.