Jumbled memories of people, events and places….


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My class at one point many years ago loved magic. So we had a magician come in and entertain them. He did a great job although I am not sure he was prepared for the group we had. We ended up having more than 1/2 the school attend that day. He did a fantastic job.

I liked doing things then that were different. It gave the kids a chance to see the world from a slightly different angle. I was afforded that opportunity spending part of my early educational years in Thailand. I saw what poverty and bad conditions really were like.

My father always told me that educators open doors. That you have to find what intrigues the students so that you can introduce them not only to the other side of what they like, but what lies beyond what they like. Opening that door is the value educators bring.

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My friend and fellow teacher Bob DeGrof. He was the one that came up with the idea for Nando’s hideaway the picture and placard I shared earlier this week. Bob and I used to watch Cubs games and Bob often joined Sean and I when we played basketball.

Bob was an awesome dad and friend. His son Brian was the cutest. We had a lot of fun back in the day. Bob like me was married to a very difficult person. In the end we both moved on from bad relationships. I suspect it took the same toll on Bob that it took on me. He did however get Brian out of that process so in the end no matter what he walked away a richer man.

album333I just walked away. At least in the end we both got to better places.

This picture was taken in Afghanistan 1972. Kodak 110 camera. I have loved this picture that I took more than 40 years ago for many years. To me it symbolized the place I was visiting. Afghanistan in 1972 was a tough place. UNESCO was building the educational system in the country trying to make it a better place. The very system the Taliban destroyed some 25 years later.

It was a harsh land. Little water and other than the mountain pass (Kybar sp) it has not much. Our family friends were there (working for UNESCO as well) and we stopped there on our way home to the states. That visit and this picture has haunted me ever since. This is before the Russian invasion that was around 1975/78. Before the rise of the Taliban and the destruction of the reclining Buddha’s yet without a doubt this picture showed what we’ve been fighting over for most of the last 100 years.

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Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow

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