Today the 2nd graders had a bake sale to earn money for charity. At 9:00 am I accompanied my 4th grade class to the indoor gym area in the basement of the school where each of the 4 second grade classes had set up tables around the perimeter of the room filled to the brim with Turkish baked goods. Most everything I'd never seen before: cakes, cookies, stuffed apricots, countless delicacies decorated with pistachios, corn bread soaked in honey, stuffed grape leaves, puffed pastries filled with cheese and herbs...there could be an entire dictionary dedicated to names of only Turkish sweets..Standing behind each table was each of the second graders wearing a rubber glove (yeah for that!) and "selling" their baked goods (or rather their mother's culinary skills.) Each child had his or her own "sales pitch" and plastic baggie to collect the money from their sales. Many of these kids were very persuasive and their persuasiveness led me to an orangeish/greenish pastry that I would never have chosen on my own, but which, indeed, turned out to be delicious!
While I was savoring my purchases and talking with one of the other English teachers, we were interrupted by a very friendly and thoughtful second grade girl. According to my English "translator" this girl wanted to know how I was able to buy some treats. She thought that since I don't speak Turkish and I come from America that I don't have any Turkish money. She wanted to know if I needed some "charity".