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Dear Boundless Families:
When studying Existentialists, it never hurts to quote Franz Kafka’s first line in METAMORPHOSIS,
“When Gregor Samsa woke up one morning from unsettling dreams, he found himself changed in his bed into a monstrous vermin.”
Well, when I woke up this morning I found myself transformed into my anxious mother.
Stepping onto my porch to overcast and plus11 made worry for the warmth of your intrepid seed on the river.
Do they have hats? Gear soaked? They must be freezing, surely. Running CANOE EATER RAPIDS shivering? Just come home. Its warm inside.
But the Satellite phone doesn’t ring. This is a good thing.
I take refuge in looking out window facing the north, wondering on their welfare, waiting for their return; like a pathetic Penelope waiting for Odysseus to come home from Troy after 18 years.
I will drive, hike and canoe three hours to meet the older crew tomorrow night on the Dumoine. I will bear chocolate. How else to worm my way into their tribe? They’re probably functioning like a tight military unit by now.
I’ll meet up with Adrian today on the river. He’s the other head honcho up here. He spent yesterday with the younger crew in the upper section of the river. I’ll get an update from him on the younglings – but won’t be able to get that info to you until Thursday. I’ll be unplugged until then – what a blessing!
Worrying like a granny requires a little internal finesse. So I take comfort in the philosophy crew whenever I am down. They pick up my spirits.
I saw Tony strolling on the lawn with about 7 of his students in tow. They are musing. Tony is the loudest. There is comfort and there is respect and there is a sense of peace. There is also discourse. Lots of banter. And a spring to all their steps.
The pack is barefoot like the Italian Aristotle himself. They have unconciously adopted the way he saunters. Tony, who is a tad bow-legged – has somehow transformed their gait by his mere presence.
The world “cult” pops into mind, and as mental telepathy would have it, Spencer (student) hollers to me, “Yes, sir, we’re a cult”.
I beg of them, “Please don’t tell your parents, my son’t not a lawyer yet”. They giggle, and Ashley shoves me, taking joy she can harass an elder without retribution. Like a family, they are.
And I think Spencer is not too far off on the cult thing. There was something so classical and incredibly beautiful about that moment. A teacher melding minds with his students. I swear the group could have been transplanted to the steps of the Agora in Athens 2500 years ago and not be out of place. This was a timeless exchange for the ages.
I must confess I don’t have the greatest sense of the English crew. I dutifully visit twice a day, and from the first day, have been met with “all good”. Amazing kids. All over the curriculum.”
Yesterday they drove to Combermere to do research for videos they will be producing, writing and directing. They apparently hung out and interviewed some locals to juice up the content.
This all to say that English has been on auto-drive from the first moment.
Hope your weekends were wonderful.
Warm regards.
Steven
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