Playing with ideas and discovering new phenomena using practical knowledge enlightened by the Certified Interpretive Guide (CIG) course.

Phenomena. The uniqueness of phenomena.
Facts, true facts.
Meaning, meaning before facts, deeper meaning.
Universal terms, love, happiness, maybe sadness, emotions. Definitely emotions.

Message. A message with meaning. But what is the meaning? Listen! Listen? Yes, listen! Listen to what the phenomena are whispering. Whispering? Lucija, you must have lost your mind! No, wait! I can hear something!  Yes, there it is! I can hear it, what a beautiful sensation. But what do I do with it?  Maybe I should follow it. Yes, follow the message!  A message that guides me, a lighthouse. My lighthouse. Isn’t it wonderful, just the idea of it?  Having your own bright lighthouse. I don’t know about you, but to me, it brings peace and joy.

These were the thoughts roaming through my head while I was walking through my hometown’s park forest, looking for new cultural phenomena to interpret. For a matter of fact, this happens every time I indulge myself in interpretation and the process that comes with it. I must say that since the CIG course, I have reached new perspectives. A lighthouse, a metaphor for the idea which keeps you on track during cultural heritage interpretation. As our CIG trainer, Max, would say, it is your own theme, your own lighthouse, it is there just for you, connect with it. What an abstract idea, but it makes perfect sense, doesn’t it? And when you think about it, it is quite logical too. Would participants like to follow me to my lighthouse – or do they have other lighthouses where they would like to guide me?

“Lucija, look!”. I have sunk so deep in my thoughts that for a brief moment I forgot I was with my friend Tijana. “Look! A lighthouse!”. Tijana noticed a tablecloth with a lighthouse drawn on it, which belonged to a nearby beach bar. “A lighthouse, can you imagine?”. A coincidence or not, it brought a big smile to our faces and a warm fuzzy feeling inside. I remembered the first time I was introduced to the Certified Interpretive Guide course principles and Interpret Europe’s approach to heritage interpretation. We were a small group with different backgrounds and of all ages. I was listening in awe to our trainer, eager to learn, trying to comprehend that vision on heritage, which I had never heard before.

I always wondered why people lack an appreciation for heritage, starting with their own. One could say these individuals are ignorant. But what if there is something more to it? What if they are not aware of what is standing right in front of them. What if there is someone who could bring them close to what they are seeing, to acknowledge, to make them think, to feel. As our trainer says, address people’s minds, but most importantly, address their senses and their hearts.

Lucija Šorić recently obtained her MSc and MA degree in International leisure, tourism and events management. During her studies at NHL Stenden in The Netherlands and University of Derby in the UK, she collaborated with ETFI, VVV Nederland information centres and their Knowledge platform tackling contemporary issues. Lucija can be contacted at:

To cite this article:
Šorić, Lucija (2020) ‘Lucija’s lighthouses‘. In Interpret Europe Newsletter 4-2020, 12.

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