Vanessa starts with a story about calling her grandfather every Friday to tell him Shabbat Shalom. She explores how gestures are important, even when there are no visible effects of the action. The recap this week was shockingly collaborative. You should still vote for who won though.
In looking at Cedric Diggory, Vanessa and Casper explore how Cedric navigates being both loyal to Harry for sharing the tip about the dragons in the First Task, but also loyal to the Triwizard Tournament and the larger value of fairness. Vanessa talks about the struggle between higher loyalties and a present situation-- doing a work task vs self care/taking a nap.
Casper brings up the framework of integrity as the consistency between our inner lives and our outer actions. Vanessa connects this to a love of truth versus a love of loyalty, and how sometimes these values can be at odds with each other.
Casper and Vanessa talk about the integrity of nature. Vanessa quotes a great poem by Mary Oliver called “Peonies”:
This morning the green fists of the peonies are getting ready
to break my heart
as the sun rises,
as the sun strokes them with his old, buttery fingers
and they open —
pools of lace,
white and pink —
and all day the black ants climb over them,
boring their deep and mysterious holes
into the curls,
craving the sweet sap,
taking it away
to their dark, underground cities —
and all day
under the shifty wind,
as in a dance to the great wedding,
the flowers bend their bright bodies,
and tip their fragrance to the air,
their red stems holding
all that dampness and recklessness
gladly and lightly,
and there it is again —
beauty the brave, the exemplary,
Do you love this world?
Do you cherish your humble and silky life?
Do you adore the green grass, with its terror beneath?
Do you also hurry, half-dressed and barefoot, into the garden,
and exclaiming of their dearness,
fill your arms with the white and pink flowers,
with their honeyed heaviness, their lush trembling,
to be wild and perfect for a moment, before they are
In Floralegia, Vanessa shares a memory from swimming in the Irish Sea in November, when the elderly Irishpeople who were already in the water told her, "It doesn't get warmer the longer you wait." Vanessa and Casper notice how Fleur's task to save her sister is distinctly different than the other champions, because they are heightened stakes.