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Photo by Emily Shahrzad Rahravan, Indonesia Semester.

An introduction. Better late than never?

“There is wisdom in turning as often as possible from the familiar to the unfamiliar; it keeps the mind nimble; it kills prejudice, and it fosters humor. – Santayana”

This passage from “Why We Travel” struck home for me. Not only because it sounds so similar to my favorite quote from Twain’s Innocents Abroad, “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things can not be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime”, but also because it captures my favorite effect of travel…opened hearts and minds.

I have lived in a small, rural town in eastern North Carolina for almost 20 years. Most of the students I teach and travel with have never lived anywhere else, many have never needed a passport, some have never flown, and a few have only traveled as far as VA or SC. Talk about Innocents Abroad 🙂

I love watching young people overcome their fears, start to re-frame how they view their place in the world, and eventually even see home differently. We talk about how you cannot appreciate the things that make up home until you have stepped back far enough to see all parts (both good and bad). We start from “America is a great place!” – but my joy is showing them that it is not the only great place.

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Many apologies for the late posting.
I am truly looking forward to meeting everyone and experiencing this journey together. I will be a little out of the loop for the next couple of weeks as I will be in Belize with students.