This is the third part of a series. Read all of the series here.
This one isn't so much from Morocco as it is from our trip.
A fellow guest at our riad in Marrakech was a 70-something-year-old British man who took a dilettante's interest in Roman forts and camps and turned this interest into a research project and eventual paper which added to the body of knowledge of the classical world. And this man was not even an academic classicist! He just did it for fun. He reminded me of the joy I once had when studying classics and original Roman texts. Yes, I now have motherhood claiming most of my time, but learning shouldn't stop with college. And proactive learning which can lead to new knowledge for others is not beyond anyone. This man was quite an encouragement to use time industriously. If you're interested, you can find his paper here.
While I'm on the subject, I should add that I could have gotten this inspiration much closer to home. My husband, Matt Layman, has consistently contributed to his field of software programming and has, for the past several years, spent much of his pleasure reading time with books about coding and best practices for his industry. As a result, he's a better programmer than he was in 2006 when he graduated from UVa, and the mysterious world of computers (classicist here, remember?) has benefited from his open source contributions.
While at the moment I don't have the time to undertake significant research in any particular area of interest, I can look for ways to challenge myself through readings, conversations, and experiences. And who knows--maybe there is graduate work in my future (my VERY future!).