Adults, as you know, are remote, powerful and unpredictable, giving them a striking resemblance to the Greek gods on Olympia. When they make promises to take you to the circus which they then casually renege on because they prefer to go to a garden party in a mauve gown (mauve, for chrissake!), they are grateful if you have the grace to forget the broken promise as fast as possible.
They generally show no emotion, and when they do, it’s misplaced and cloying, as described elsewhere in this magical book:
‘The idea caught on with the Olympians, always open to sentiment of a treacly, woodcut order.’
‘If the gods are ever grateful to man for anything, it is when he is so good as to display a short memory.’
Source: Kenneth Grahame, Dream Days, illus. by Maxfield Parrish (Edin.: Paul Harris Publishing, 1983), p. 78 and p. 212