About midway through Calvino's refreshing recitation, the narrator tells us that "Cosimo was still at the age when the desire to tell stories makes one want to live more, thinking one has not done enough living to recount." I believe that age is every age. Cosimo climbs into your heart from the very beginning, remaining as sure-footed there as he is up in the trees, and in so doing, reminds the reader that one doesn't have remain bound to the earth in order to find respectability. Though he tells his father, "A gentleman ... is such whether he is on earth or on the treetops--if he behaves with decency," Cosimo chaffs at the world's heavyhandedness, pomp, and circumstance. Tarrying over our heads, Cosimo emerges as very down-to-earth.