Monday, March 14, 2011

The Quest for American Boarding Schools

It's a helluva a funny world...

And I mean that in every Woody Allen, Marx Brothers, Saul Bellow and Philip Roth-ian sense of the ironies, joys and despairs of this ever-shifting, mercurial physical and moral universe...

The other day a friend was tearing her hair out (I exaggerate... slightly...) and kvetching w/ G-d over Andover ('beloved 4th generation Andover...') not even willing to countenance her child as a student('traitorous Andover...'), and then -- whoosh -- another innocent boarding school swoops in like the blessed shadow of the Archangel Michael with a message of FULL EXPENSES all covered++ for her beloved n cherished daughter ('she of four generations of Andover descent...'). Joy!!

Now, as our own deeply cherished and admired NMH struggles to figure out who to love and who to fund, another angelic voice comes from the American wilderness of Vermont to bless another friend's beloved, talented, charismatic son, heir-apparent to their dreams and aspirations, with a gift outright of $25k/year to join their splendid, idealistic and ambitious world of cows, youth and intellect. More Joy!!

As my friend Carl of fond Amherst memories told me years ago, on the cusp
of our own beloved, irreplaceable sons heading off to the mysterious scholastic world of NMH, the unspoken secret of American education is that these expensive, elite, unique and precocious US boarding schools have more $$ to give for scholarships to the offspring of we upper-middle-class pretenders than most US colleges or universities will have to offer.

It's a helluva funny world, brothers and sisters...

Each of us has strode across the worldly and spiritual chasms of our once idealistic, youthful, impressionable dreams to find our own way in this richly troubling, endearing and magnificent world.

Yet, as we cross that psychological, emotional gorge into 'middle age' (another challenging form of the wise, impossible and impartial Middle Path...), for some, into our mid-50s, our greatest joys and dreams have been grafted now within our children, their futures, their hopes, their dreams now... those human creatures most dear to us.

Whatever we can do to light and liberate their paths to offer them (as Hannah Montana sings...) 'the best of both worlds' is now our greatest treasure, meaning and aspiration.

That we share unbound...

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