January 30, 2007
Che sarà, sarà
I was thinking about la prof.ssa C. in the car this evening. I mentioned running into her at my son’s liceo a few weeks ago. She had been his principle teacher for the first two years covering Italian, Latin, Greek, history and geography for about 20 hours of each school week. In our cordial greetings I told her how much my son had appreciated the class trip they had taken at the end of the quinto ginnasio (2nd year at the classical studies liceo). He still has the photos of his classmates traveling around baroque Sicily on his computer screensaver and it was the highlight of his ginnasio experience. “Oh really” she answered, “I’d thought that it hadn’t been a successful trip." She looked a bit quizzical and thoughtful for a moment (in a professorial kind of way), “you just never know with kids, do you." She did concede that the class had come together and really molded as a group after that trip – and it showed in their classwork two years later.
So she began to contemplate taking this year’s quinto ginnasio on a trip, although she hadn’t planned on it so far. This had been a difficult class, but they were getting better and maybe it would be a good thing. She sighed, “but I don’t know if I really want to this year”.
I, being American, immediately thought of all that responsibility (and liability) – a group of 14-15 year olds, what a nightmare, who knows what could happen. She looked at me quite surprised, “I had never thought of that, I guess I always just think that if something is going to happen, it will happen, I never worry about the responsibility." No, she was just plain tired and these trips were exhausting to organize and run and the teachers get no extra pay to speak of for their extra effort.
I smiled. We always think first of our grand responsibility in controlling the future and what fate has in store for us. Prof.ssa C. instead sleeps soundly on school trips through Sicily. Che sarà, sarà.