One July 9, we were in Rome, right near the Via Veneto, with our three little children, one of whom had a birthday. My wife found a cake and some candles and borrowed the roof garden of the hotel for a little party.
My wife has taught the children a love of music and art and poetry and cooking and family. I taught them how to say, “Tre gelati, per favore,” so they could walk down the Via to an ice-cream stand and order their favorite flavor.
Today is Corinna V. Wilson’s birthday; her family is fussing over her in Pennsylvania.
I went out on the deck of our family home on Long Island and looked at the empty nest discreetly hidden on a branch. A few weeks ago, the nest held three blue eggs, guarded by the mother. Then there were three wide beaks, waiting for her to get back from our front lawn, where she had discovered a stash of meals.
For a few days, the three birds were flying at low altitude, watching their mother forage. Now they are full size, and they flit and feed and sing.
“They may hate the cultural context they now find themselves teaching in, but they love their work. The Achilles’ heel of schoolteachers, one all too easily exploited by politicians, is that they love their students.”
(One of the best reads in the NYT these days is Margaret Renkl, in Nashville. In her latest post, Renkl describes the dedicated core of “born teachers” – the majority, she submits.)
(From Madeleine Albright in one of her final interviews in February):
“Putin is small and pale,” I wrote, “so cold as to be almost reptilian.” He claimed to understand why the Berlin Wall had to fall but had not expected the whole Soviet Union to collapse. “Putin is embarrassed by what happened to his country and determined to restore its greatness.” – Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, recalling her first meeting with the relatively unknown Vladimir Putin in 2000. – The New York Times, Feb. 23, 2022.