Sunday, March 24, 2013

Passion, Dreams

This week I had my last in-school robotics program--eight weeks went by fast! To celebrate, I gave the kids popcorn an a documentary festival. The theme was impressive buildings from human history. We all geeked out together to clips of docs like Engineering An Empire: The Aztecs.

Some of the kids just liked to see images from around the world, and others were already talking about being engineers when they grew up.

Engineering is decidedly not in my future, but it meant the world to me to see some young faces light up, and to get the gears turning in their heads about what their careers and passions might be someday.

Speaking of documentaries, I finally watched the lovely documentary Jiro Dreams of Sushi, which is a tender look at the life and work of possibly the greatest living sushi chef. The title character is exacting and hard-to-please; sushi is his obsession. In the first scene of the documentary we learn that new sushi recipes do, in fact, come to Jiro in his dreams.

Jiro is self-disciplined, from food preparations to the layout of his restaurant. He believes in routine, and tries to follow the same rhythm every day. He was hard on others, too--his sons spoke of wanting to go to college after high school, but he had them learn his trade instead.

I was charmed by this documentary, not the least because I love nothing more than seeing/hearing people talk about the passions that drive them.

I wonder if my passion is Passions. Here is a look at what I did this weekend:

I went to one book club meeting (I am involved with two of them).

I went to writers group.

I plowed through an intense, thick novel (The Corrections by Jonathan Franzen). It is still haunting me now. The characters are almost too exposed, the narrator too honest. By the end I felt I was picking up on the characters' neuroses...

I got lost in my next read, The Book of Saladin by Tariq Ali. It is lush and dreamlike; I am in love with this novel.

I started a new knitting project, which I hope will turn into a birthday gift for a friend.

I took three long walks around town.

I made four used plastic water bottles into planters for sprouting seeds.

I studied Spanish. Highlights include new flashcards for pronouns, as well as adverbs.

Maybe someday these will all converge somehow? Maybe I can lead community gardening presentations in Spanish? Maybe I'll start a new kind of book club where we hike for a few hours while critiquing a novel? Maybe I'll film a documentary about how COOL it is to knit??

We'll see.

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