Fintan's Olympic ways.
Fintan is a bit of a philosopher, though you might not guess it from his curly headed cuteness. To find that out, you have to listen to him, a bit. Only then does it become clear quite what is going on in his capacious head.
A couple of days ago, Fintan, six, was talking to his mother, Syahidah.
He turned to her with a pondering look, in his eyes.
"So...", he began, carefully, as if laying out a thought like a cloth on a table, "The first is the winner. The second is what?"
Syahidah looked down at him, not suspecting where this might be going. "The runner-up.", she said, reaching back to memories of sporting events.
"And the third?", pursued Fintan.
"The third place.", she said, a little at a loss for a more colourful description.
Fintan wasn't satisfied with that. Perhaps it lacked the poetry everything good in life should have.
Syahidah knew that more was required, so she decided to elaborate a bit, and try another tack: "It's like this, you see: the first gets the gold; the second gets the silver; the third gets the bronze."
Fintan's eyes grew alert to the possibilities. This was more like it.
"And what number am I?", he prompted, his voice speeding up a little, as an idea occurred to him. "I want to be the BROWN stuff, the Earth."
Syahidah allowed herself an instant's sheer puzzlement - but Fintan went on too quickly to allow it to last.
"Because then I will get the gold, the silver AND the bronze."
Syahidah was quite dumbfounded by the profundity of Fintan's answer. He wanted the soil in which the metal ores were found, so that he would get ALL the medals: how sharp of him.
Fintan's words had the air of an ancient tale of wisdom - something Aesop might have said, over a fire, at night, to his friends. So, what she learnt, in that moment, is that there is more to Fintan's questions, than might first appear - and he is very quick to see the broader possibilities of a situation and to divine a unique solution, that solves all the problems, at once.
Well done, Fintan, my Gold, Silver and Bronze medal winner.
(If you would like to learn more of Ainan Celeste Cawley, 10, or his gifted brothers, Fintan, 6 and Tiarnan, 4, this month, please go to:
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