My new book “Midlife Solo” is now available.

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Other People’s Children

It’s always gratifying when a student achieves success, which might mean publication, or might mean something else. A student two terms ago, Lizz Bryce, wrote a moving essay for class. We gave her a few suggestions for edits and I said, Send it to the Globe. And there it is, giving pleasure to thousands of readers. Success! Brava, Lizz. (I hope you can read it too.)

The pleasure teachers take in student success is one of the messages of a good French film Ruth and I saw yesterday, Other People’s Children. A forty-year-old teacher meets a divorced man and falls madly in love, not just with him, but with his four-year-old. For the first time, she wants her own child. Is it too late? Can she content herself with caring for other people’s children, not in the home, but in the classroom? Ruth and I objected to one huge flaw in the film — that any man would leave a stunningly beautiful, kind, open, loving woman, for any reason. But otherwise, we enjoyed it very much — except that Ruth kept snorting, every time our heroine and her friends lit cigarettes, which they did often, “It’s 2023! I don’t believe this!”

France. Shrug.

Went to the library yesterday to take back Stay True, by Hua Hsu, a memoir of the author’s college days and a special friend who was murdered, the aftermath for him and for his friends. A slow start, more than I wanted to know about Hsu’s musical tastes and love of Kurt Cobain, but by the end, deeply affecting and wise. Got out Donna Morrissey’s Pluck. Can’t get enough of Other People’s Lives.

What a strange June we’ve had — blistering heat, cold, tons of rain. Today, mild and grey, with smoke in the air. It’s Wednesday, so it’s the Y. Anna and the boys came over yesterday with friends from Nova Scotia — a father who’s driving across the country with his three young sons, all staying for a few exciting days in the big city, with Anna, the champion of other people’s children. They’d been to visit his cousin who’s a firefighter — imagine, five boys got to see a fire station and engines up close! Dad is on his way to Alberta to do an unbelievable feat: a triple marathon IN ONE DAY. He told me I looked great for 72. That may be, but I creak getting out of bed. He’s running three marathons in a day. Got to up my game. To at least trot without moaning noises.



2 Responses to “Other People’s Children”

  1. Marvellous site. You are talented, hardworking, and beautiful. How perfect!

    • Beth Kaplan says:

      Well, that is certainly lovely to read, Constance, thanks! Hope to see you again sometime. And then reality may dawn on you …

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About Beth

I began keeping a journal at the age of nine. Nearly fifty years later, I started this online journal, sharing reflections, reviews, updates, and the occasional secret.

Some Blogs I Follow

Chris Walks
This blog evolves. It once was about travels. Now it’s a reason to be at the keyboard that I value.

Theresa Kishkan
Theresa Kishkan is a writer living on the Sechelt Peninsula on the west coast of Canada.

I walk on. With my feet, and in my mind as well.

Carrie Snyder
Wherever you’ve come from, wherever you’re going, consider this space a place for reflection and pause.


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