How often one hears children wishing they were grown up, and the old wishing they were young again! Each age has its pleasure and its pains, and the happiest person is the one who enjoys what each age gives him without wasting any time in useless regrets.
Children is a time when there are few duties to make life hard. If a child has good parents, he is fed, looked after, and loved whatever he may do. It’s impossible for him to be given so much again in his life without having to do anything in return. Besides, life is always giving new things to the child. A child finds pleasure in playing in the rain, or in the snow. His first visit to the seaside makes him wild. But a child has his pains; he is not so free to do as he wishes. He is continually being told not to do this, not to do that, or being punished for what he has done wrong. His life is therefore not perfectly happy.
When the young man starts to make his own living, he becomes free from the rules of school and parents; but at the time he is forced to accept duties. He can no longer expect others to pay for his food, his clothes and his room, but has to work if he wants to live comfortably. If he spends most of his time playing about in the way that he used to as a child, he will go hungry. And if he breaks the law of society as he used to break the laws of his parents, he may go to prison. If, however, he works hard, keeps out of trouble, and has good health, he can have the great happiness of seeing himself make steady progress in his job and of building up his own position in society.
Old age has always been thought of as the worst age to be, but it is not necessary for the old to be unhappy. With old age should come wisdom and the ability to help others with advice wisely given. They can have the joy of seeing their children making progress in life; they can watch their grandchildren growing up around them and, perhaps, best of all, they can, if their life has been a useful one, feel the happiness of having come through the battle of life safely and of having reached a time when they can lie back and rest, leaving others to continue the fight.
56. The main reason children wish they were grown up, and the old wish they were young again is that ___________.
A. both are satisfied with the strong points at their ages
B. both enjoy the strong points at the other age by looking back or looking forward
C. the human beings should be like this
D. regrets and happiness both exist whether they are young or old
57. According to the second paragraph, the writer thinks that __________.
A. life for a child is comparatively easy
B. a child should enjoy the equal freedom with seniors
C. if much is given to a child, he is expected to do something in return
D. a child’s greatest dissatisfaction lies in the trouble he makes
58. Which of the following is NOT needed for a young man to be happy?
A. Hard work. B. Freedom from troubles. C. Wealth. D. Health.