Well, my silence didn’t last long. This morning i taught Carla, a really pretty 21-year-old girl who wants to study Photography in London. We talked about what it is to be an artist (an outsider who is nonetheless human), the futility of social recognition in these matters, the Nobel, etc. She said it would be nice to win prizes and fame, but wondered what it could mean to you, after death. i considered and said: “i suppose it becomes totally irrelevant”.

She showed me her photographs and asked if i could help her write some text for each. In the end, i dictated my impressions to her, that her photography is always about duality, shadow and light, reflections, the inscrutable which is yet clearly before us. She likes portraits. We talked about two very good shots she had taken, of children in South Africa, and i quoted Wittgenstein “the face is the best picture of the human soul.” She wrote it down, getting his name wrong; i corrected her, adding: “it’s better to say where you got it from, though i feel quite sure he wouldn’t mind you using the line.”

My last lesson with her tomorrow. i am divided, whether i should ask to stay in touch or just leave it to her to ask. i think the latter but in the moment, who knows. i fascinate her; but in turn she interests me, as i see she will not have an ordinary life. She is bold and sensitive, quite fearless, i think.

After Carla i travelled to a nearby company to teach Jutta, the HR Manager. We spent 3 hours together in a cavernous meeting room. She had food & drinks ready for me, and seemed to take pleasure in serving me – a novelty for her, i imagine. She was girlish, whimsical, laughing, enjoying my enjoyment of her. i told her, openly, that i enjoy watching her, her expressions, her demeanour, spirit. She said the face i see isn’t her work face, that to her colleagues she is formidable, and must be so.

At the end of the lesson she walked me to reception and in full view of the receptionists, perhaps mischievously, gave me a warm smile and prolonged, strangely sensual handshake, rubbing her palm into mine for what felt like half an hour. i reciprocated, stroking the inside of her wrist, and she gave me a half hug and a grin. Perhaps she does it just to sow gossip at work, out of mischief. Pleasing, nonetheless.