As I went hiking to Lake Corani in Bolivia, I could be forgiven for confusing the sun, barely shining through threatening clouds like a spooky moon, on the one side,
and the full moon on the other side, shining as bright as if it was the source of all light in our solar system.
Still, it was very embarrassing when I said “It’s wonderful to see the sun and the moon at the same time” to a gentleman in Kango, a small hamlet by the shore of the lake, pointing to the two celestial bodies as I identified them. Without even having to look up into the sky, he corrected me dryly “This one is the moon. The sun is over there,” only half-suppressing a smile.
How good that I had a GPS during my hike. But in all fairness, the sky in the southern hemisphere is really confusing because everything is upside down.
Don’t feel bad, it could be worse. I knew a girl in 9th grade who seriously thought the sun and moon were the same thing; in the day it was the sun and in the night it was the moon. When I explained that they were not the same thing and explained the different planets in our universe she looked at me in amazement as though I was rocket scientist. I just shook my head – what else can you do?
Wow. You wonder what her parents did talk about with her daughter and what books they gave her (probably none).
But also very smart-ass of you to explain the solar system while in 9th grade. ;-)
To be honest, I don’t even know if she knew that Earth was round. She clearly wasn’t that intelligent.
But even more impressive was the fact that my five year old niece told me this weekend that she was learning about the different planets in kindergarten. She then proceeded to recite the list of planets that exist today, making sure I knew that Pluto was once considered a planet, but no longer.
But then again, this is coming from the child who, while I was trying to sleep, said that she doesn’t want Trump to be president, because “he wants segregation”. (Mind you this was totally out of the blue , so it was unsolicited nor had there been any discussion about politics.) When I asked her where she learned that from, she responded “from my sister” (who is 8). She then continued to say that would make her sad, because that would mean she would then be separated from her “besties” (because her close friends are Indian). If only more people could be as pure of heart.
I did have to clarify that segregation didn’t just pertain to skin color, because when I asked for the definition she told me that it was keeping the dark skinned people separated from the light skinned. Still – not bad for a five year old.
Thankfully no one told her about the Japanese internment camps during WWII, because then she would be totally stressed out about me, her adopted Korean aunt, being separated from her. (She already views NYC to be too far from Princeton, NJ.) 😊
WOW! It must be a joy to be around such bright and interested and, as you say, pure of heart children.
If you’re ever in the Princeton area, stop by and you can meet them. 😊
If you’re ever in NYC you always have a couch to stay on. We can swap stories about Romania; however, I only visited a few years after Ceausescu was over thrown. I never lived there like you did.
I can’t say I ever developed a taste for Țuică, did you? They claimed Țuică was the cure for any ailment. I think it just burned my insides. Lol
Oh yes, that would be very interesting indeed!
I have fond memories of Romania, it was the most welcoming of all the countries I ever lived in Europe. But I very rarely drink alcohol and I actually never tried Țuică. But I do miss the zero-alcohol Ciuc Radler.
Yes, the people were so welcoming and friendly. I have to admit, however, it was the first time I was stared at and swarmed by people, because they had never seen an Asian before. I had to wait to have my father and another man escort me out of the airport and to the car, because there were so many men trying to grab me and touch me. (Only people departing or arriving were permitted in the airport at that time, so there was a large group of people waiting right outside of the airport doors. All airport personnel wore army clothing and had rifles.) It was quite the experience as a 19 year old coming from Belgium, where I was currently living as an exchange student. Obviously it’s much different now, but Romania was so much different back then. Bucharest was totally different. The kindness seems to be the same.
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