The Institute today has become more secular, but retains its religious roots on an interfaith basis. The program runs for nine weeks in the summer. Some people come for the whole summer (and a few people live here all year round), but most visitors stay for a week, as we are doing.
Each week focuses on a different theme. Last week featured documentary filmmaker Ken Burns, who led a session about the American West. This week explores international affairs, and the opening session, yesterday morning, was hosted by CNN's Fareed Zakaria, who is also a Washington Post columnist and Time magazine editor at large.
|We're staying on the 3rd floor of this house|
Yes, there are a few families here, with some kids running around, but I'd say it's much more common to see older couples walking along the streets. And there's plenty of room for wheelchairs at the amphitheater.
The demographic is definitely older, white, middle and upper-middle class. But people do come from all over. We've met couples from Missouri and North Carolina. There are of course plenty of people from New York and Pennsylvania. I've been surprised at how many people come from Ohio. I guess it shouldn't seem that extraordinary. We're only about 50 miles from Ohio. It's just that (forgive me again), when do you meet anyone who lives in Ohio? When do you even think about Ohio?
|The snack bar|
The Institute also offers a whole series of classes, covering art, crafts, language, literature, religion and philosophy. B had signed up for three classes before we even got here. I'd signed up for nothing. I figured the music and the theater and the morning lectures would be quite enough.
|Fareed Zakaria speaks to our mature audience|
The photos you see here today are those I'd taken before I started my class, which runs for two hours, every afternoon for the rest of the week. So I'm going to be busy for the next few days, and will probably not be able to produce another blog post until sometime next week.
At which point I will display my new photographs. And then you can be the judge about whether or not I learned anything.