It’s funny. I hadn’t really ever heard the term before, but it came up twice last week. I haven’t even googled it, but I’m assuming it’s something to do with ideologies, where you are in the world, and something related to those conversations when you can be up all night with someone figuring out how to put all of the world’s wrongs to right. 

A really good friend and I had one of those chats this week. He shared with me how, if he were Prime Minister of Israel, he’d sort out peace in the Middle East. It was great stuff. Made a lot of sense, but ultimately we had to conclude that, even if he was right, emailing PM Netanyahu with the idea, or even finding someone who knows someone who knows his chief policy advisor, it would fall on deaf ears, get lost in the ether, or at best, he would be told that, with respect, he doesn’t know what he’s talking about and please let the professionals get on with it. 

In truth, I’ve given up on those big geo-political conversations. I have been actively trying to disengage from them. A few years ago, my mum and I had a “heated conversation” (read “argument” unless you are my mum reading this in which case of course we never argue…!) about whether it was better to not know something, or know it, based on that fact that we are so unable to help solve it anyway. We were sitting in her beautiful garden, enjoying coffee in the sunshine, and she was reading an article in The Sunday Times about a child soldier somewhere in Africa. I didn’t want to read it. I couldn’t read it. I couldn’t even allow myself to look at the picture…

Maybe that was exactly the problem: I couldn’t stare into the eyes -albeit in a newspaper photograph – of someone I felt so so sad and sorry for, and feel so very very helpless. 

My mum and I didn’t conclude our discussion one way or another, but I do often think of that moment, when I’m in our TLC cafe, sharing a coffee and chat with someone, and they tell me a bit of their story. When I look into their eyes, and them into mine, we share a moment together, knowing that somehow, we have found a way to help each other have a better day in this world overburdened with geo-political problems. 

published by Anna Dyson
Founder and Director of ToastLoveCoffee. CEO of Dyson family, Roundhay (Leeds) branch which involves a huge array of skills impossible to imagine or articulate! Formerly, Jewish educator and community professional.


  1. posted by Pippa on Reply

    Beautifully put, as ever, Anna

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.