I want to be: an Olympic gymnast, a music producer, winner of LeMans

Fall                                                                   Harvest Moon

The waning gibbous harvest moon hangs over Black Mountain this morning. A blue, blue sky contrasted by green and gold at the mountain’s peak. Night time temperatures have fallen below 40 so there’s a distinct chill in the air. Still little precipitation, signs pointing to high fire danger, very high on one nearby.

Stack of pallets in the back beckons before the snow begins to fly. Mike, who delivered them for us, threw in one he had lying around home. As I said before, Mike built our fence, a good one. He also carried my TV up to the loft. It was heavy and bulky. Strong guy. And a good one.

Third religious school class last night. Exhausting so far. Tara made table tents with the kid’s Hebrew names on them. Each child born into a Jewish home gets a Hebrew name at birth. Kate got one when she converted, Rachel. The kids sign in with their Hebrew name, too. All this to reinforce learning Hebrew, but it also gives a distinctive Jewish feel to the class right away. Religious school provides a place where these kids, usually in schools where there are few other Jews, can feel a bond with Jewish culture and each other.

Yesterday’s class was sweet. We asked them to bring in three objects that represented who they were and three that represented who they wanted to become. There was an atlas that represented a family’s adventuresome spirit, a Ferrari model removed from its box with a surgical glove covering a potentially sweaty hand, a picture of a Nike swoosh on an expensive athletic shoe, a ballet shoe, a homemade game constructed from cardboard boxes, a video game, Battlefront. Many more. That was who they are now.

A picture of an airplane wing told of a girl’s ambition to be an adventurer, to not lead a boring life filled with taxes and bills. A first place medal in a state gymnastics competition revealed an ambition to be an Olympic gymnast. A small scale model of the Eiffel Tower suggested a desire to learn all the human languages. And, with the same girl, a collage of Hollywood signaled her career ambition, “I’m going to be a music producer.” Very emphatic.

One boy took objects from a bag and said they were in 1,2,3 order. A logo for Le Mans, the 24 endurance race said, “I want to win Le Mans.” A second object was a small model fighter plane. “I want to fly fighters in the Israeli Air Force.” The third, a book on WW II, meant, “I want to be a historian of World War II.”

I guess, on reflection, that this was a pretty successful class. Even though it felt chaotic to me. I think I expect them to act like adults. My problem. Next up. Holiday calendars.