Yesterday we were invited to a lunch at the Rotary Club of Seminyak and we did not miss the chance to figure out how fare the wealthy residents of the island.
We arrived at the hotel “Trans” (unfortunate name, I know); we were greeted warmly by a friendly Italian lady with her husband. So far so good, then we entered the living room where they served lunch and the comedy has begun. Everybody were sitting around the tables. We, stock-still, like two mummies (or rather three saw there was also our friend) didn’t know what we had to do.
After a while, only sparse single seats, here and there.
Embarrassed we sit at different tables (“mix the nationality” was the slogan).
I find myself next to a New Zealandese lady with the same age of my grandmother if she had not passed away at the venerable age of 99 years, last winter.
Ok, I can do it!
I’m just returned from New Zealand, I have many topics of conversation.
But just as I’m about to begin to tell my journey, comes Patrizia (the Italian lady who had welcomed us at the entrance), announcing that it has made sure to put us all together.
For our fault three tables were been mixed up and we standing again in the middle of the room with all eyes on us.
Oh my gosh!
The presentations start.
The president of the Rotary walks between all the tables handing a microphone to give to the “newcomer”, who gets up, greets and starts talking.
WTF, they are all native speakers or speak perfect English, oh my gosh !!
Paolo and I, we look the scene unarmed. Lunch is making challenging!
It’s Paolol’s turn. He gets up, briefly he tells our transfer. He speaks of our family. He explain that he is a photographer and that he would like to create an activity related to that. He tells everything, in conclusion !!
It’s my turn. And what do I say now? Totally Black-out!
Then I come out with an “I’m His Wife!”
(Years of study, hard work, professional development and many travels around the world, summarized in “his wife ??!!). I’m the symbol of the anti-feminist emancipation !!
I try to start again. I begin to list my previous professional career. In the middle of the speech I get the nosebleed…it’s all so boring !! But who cares what I was doing in Milan ??!!
I short cut “… and thank you to invite us here, today.” and I sit down again. (Actually I wanted to throw myself under the table, but I sit down.)
We begin to eat, while in front of us, it was projected the photos of the charity event held on the previous Saturday.
A sequence of caryatids, dressed in long evening dresses, smiling in front of the photographer. I want to run away, but the diligent waiter asks me, “Do you prefer sea or mushroom ravioli?”. I, that I have not yet recovered from the first speech, I do not understand anything and as a perfect Balinese, answer with a smile: “yes, thanks.”
Yes… Yes what?!?
The waiter looks at me and repeat. And me, again: “Yes.Thanks!” (Hey there, there is someone at home? Try to recover!)
Lella, our friend, me back to reality: “Sarah, do you prefer fish or mushroom ravioli?
“Mushrooms … no fish.”
Finally, I choose the fish ones.
But When he comes back with my ravioli, I’m busy in a boring conversation and I don’t hear him. So my fish ravioli ends up in another table. Patience, I spout mushroom ravioli. I would eat anything to put an end to this torture!
We finally arrived at the coffe time.
The end of the lunch is approaching or at least we believe, unware of what lies ahead. A distinguished British men begins to show a slide after another. We arrived at the point of the show called “advertising of your business.” He is the director of the Green School, us, we are his new followers.
In 45 minutes (yes you read right!), he tells us with lots of illustrations and motivational graphics, the philosophy of the School of John Hardy.
The architecture of the school is breathtaking, nestled in the jungle, is a haven of bamboo where about 400 students, each year, (for the modest sum of 9 to 15,000 dollars depending on the level) engage in learning to “think”. Exact!!
There question: how many of you have been accustomed to think when you were at school?
Silence in the room.
Now, I’m not a big supporter of the Italian school, but I remember that many professors are committed at that period, among other things, also on this issue.
Then, the rest I learned by myself, a bit as everyone I think, without the need that someone should teach me “to think”. But maybe I’m ahead, mah!
“To Think” – insists the principal – is the basis of all knowledge. The thought is not always and only in one direction, but must extend, build relationships with the surrounding nature.
“Pluto” is not just a planet, but it is also a character in Disney !!. And so on..
Classrooms without desks, hands-on demonstrations of the Pythagorean Theorem, cultivation of vegetables, picking of fruits, no uniform for students who are free to show up in slippers or funny “country chic” hats .
A world apart, in conclusion. A kingdom designed for boys. All are smiling, no patterns, no rules! How beautiful!!!
In fact, the feeling is to attend the presentation of Scentology. I look confident the arrival of Tom Cruise to avoid falling asleep. A sect with a population of rich followers.
But then, given the average age of the audience in the hall, are we sure that, apart from us, there is someone here with children of school age? I don’t THINK!!
Lella and Paolo start to laugh.
The nice mummy beside me silences them “shshsh”.
And, as when we went to the school, start a uncontrollable laughter. Every word is interpreted differently. Each question, commented. We had finally a lot of fun, but the audience did not seem to enjoy to our italian humor.
It ends the presentation, ends the lunch, ends the meeting.
Regards fast. Handshakes.
“Do you want to join the Rotary Club of Seminyak?” the president questions us.
“Um, We think about it, thanks! We let you know!”
And just because we have been accustomed “to think”, thank God also without the Green School, we have a clear answer within us !!
“Bye Bye!!” – forever.