I found the largest crossword puzzle I had ever seen in my life back in june. It covered a whole newspaper page. The hints cover another. The whole thing is a mastercard ad because it says,"more time to relax with the paper this weekend: priceless". I've carried it around in my work bag ever since. One day n the lull in a conversation with some youth I pulled it out and worked ob this big puzzle together. Over an hour later we had answered a lot of questions but the puzzle still looked blank. I put it back in my bag when i had to leave. A few days ago I got a message from one of the youth that had helped me with it, wanting a chance to work on it again.
Today we sat in a coffee shop and worked on the crossword. But this young person also started to fill in some of the blanks in their life story as well, opening the door of trust with me a few degrees more. Neither puzzle was "solved" today but progress was made, even if you can't tell from a cursory glance. Who knew my geeky fascination with crossword puzzles would turn into a youth work tool.