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Il faut cultiver notre jardin
I recently finished a PhD in history, but it never really felt like the right way to be teaching, learning or indeed living, so when I wrapped that up I hit the road. These days, I am mainly trying to figure out how to do education in a way that makes more sense than the kind of schooling I experienced as a student and as a teacher. How do people learn, and what is worth learning?
I suppose I'd like to be part of an education which helps people figure out how to live. Or, anyway, that's the question that I keep coming back to; how to live a life that feels full, good, right. And I think I get along best with people for whom that is also a question, for whom life itself is a question, a mystery. In practice this tends to mean creative people, (non-dogmatic) spiritual people, curious people. But I'm open to meeting whomever comes across my way, of course!
I live and am for the most part to be found in Australia; I used to live in Boston but it is hard to get Couchsurfing to acknowledge that this is no longer the case (thus my location info is out of date.)
I suppose the main idea I'm trying to put into practice right now seems to be this: don't be so afraid of life, or of other people. We would all life more gracefully, I think, if we could be less frightened and a little more excited about life.
Why I’m on Couchsurfing
HOW I PARTICIPATE IN COUCHSURFING
I used to host couchsurfers a fair bit while I lived in Boston, but now I'm setting out to travel myself, so I thought I'd reactivate the old account and try the surfing side of the equation.
I hosted couchsurfers while I lived in Boston several years ago, and had many lovely experiences. Now I'm travelling myself, and am hoping to have many more!
I've read lots of books over the years, perhaps too many (among other things, topics that interest me: literature, history, philosophy, psychology, anthropology, theology.) But reading a book is, at its best, like talking to someone really interesting, and talking is really what I like to do best. People are just so interesting, when they let themselves be!
Other interests: I play the guitar and the piano, both pretty terribly (self-taught and quite amateurish) but with gusto! I like to cook, and am vegetarian. I draw a bit (mostly pastels), garden a bit (mostly vegetables), write a bit (mostly fiction: I quite like strange childrens' stories that aren't really intended for children.) I've caught the dancing bug recently, which is an itch I don't get to scratch nearly enough.
I'm also really into intentional communities, co-housing and other alternatives to the suburban nuclear family. I'm not much of an activist in practice but I do have a keen interest in ways of making the world a better place.
Music, Movies, and Books
Books: Moby Dick, The Plague, Waiting for Godot, The Little Prince, Peter Pan, the Moomin books, Walden, Unbearable Lightness of Being, Steppenwolf, Narcissus and Goldmund. But in truth I don't read that much anymore, though it used to be a big part of my life.
Music: folk, country, rock, jazz
Movies: Not really a movie person. I do like My Dinner With Andre an awful lot.
One Amazing Thing I’ve Done
I have a friend that I happen to think is pretty amazing. Her name is Frances, and she's on couchsurfing too! She's pretty neat - go check her out:
Teach, Learn, Share
I don’t like the way everyone’s so specialised today, and I have this yearning to be a Renaissance person, so I’m curious to learn all sorts of things. Currently I'm interesting in learning about education in general, how to be more creative (in lots of different ways,) build houses, grow food, dance, sing, teach, make wine, cut my own hair ... as for teaching, I cook really well, and I know a lot about various humanities and social sciences, if you're into that.