The tour educator

7 Aug

by Ilan Bloch

Note: This piece, The tour educator, was written in the context of a creative writing workshop.

The owner of the farmers’ market (shuk) facilitates culinary opportunities which offer the shopper a plurality of choices — organic/not organic, sweet/savory (salty), cheaper/more expensive. All choices lay before the potential purchaser; all options are open. There is no “correct choice” as to what constitutes gourmet, healthful, nutritious or delicious food. A multitude of consumer options are available; there is no single “truth.” And, of course, the consumer is free to leave the shuk for a supermarket, a corner store, or even for the local 7-Eleven! He is even free to choose not to eat at all.

The shuk closes and the owner goes to watch her son’s music recital. He is young and the concert is, to most, less than promising in its appeal. The other parents and family members seem perturbed; this can hardly be considered a symphony performance. The mother enjoys her time there; she greatly appreciates what she hears. One might misunderstand and think this is so simply because she is a loving and doting mother. But, her appreciation is much deeper than this; she actually loves the cacophony, the inchoateness, the contradictions. She realizes that life’s different parts do not fit together neatly and conveniently, that there exists meaning in chaos, and that there are no clear answers. To her, the piece being played is not a botched Mozart but rather symbolic of the very meaning of life. How beautiful, she thinks, that these eight-year old children understand this intuitively. She fears, however, what will happen once they begin to “grow up.”

Ilan Bloch is the Director of Teaching Israel. 

Visit http://www.teachingisrael.com/israel-programs.html to read about the educational philosophy of the company.

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