Isn't it great when you come across someone who can really make a subject come alive for you, or has the knack of making things seem instantly comprehensible? The sort of person who makes you think: "Oh yes, I SEE!"
My mother, who began her long career in education as an art teacher, has that ability, and so does my friend Linda, another history of art graduate. Going round a gallery with them is like having your own walking, talking guide. (Not surprisingly, Linda is a volunteer guide - at the Tate.)
We can probably all remember teachers who were able to breathe life into their subjects and infuse us with an enthusiasm that lasted for the rest of our lives. My English teacher, Mrs Cunningham, was like that, and many of the teachers at my children's school seem to be the same.
It's not a talent I've inherited from my mother. I find it impossible to explain things to people in a simple, concise way. However, I'm delighted to tell you that Newshoot at Ethereal Monads is very good at it, and has just posted the first of her Chippenham Lectures, named after the home town of VP. It's on the principles of garden design and if her first offering is anything to go by, it is going to be a fantastic series.