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Students in a long tail boat in Indonesia. Photo by Aaron Slosberg, Indonesia Semester.

 Week 1: Sumatra!

Hi everyone,

We’ve been dealing with some power outages and lack of signal. The students compiled the following post over the last few days:

I love you, Mom and Dad. This trip is amazing. My favorite thing so far is playing with the kids from the guesthouse.

Being here is surreal. Everything we see is beautiful, everyone we meet is incredibly kind. I hope everyone at home is doing well. Only 2 leeches so far.

Hello family. I’m having a great time in Indonesia and am still alive. I’m enjoying the scenic views and messing around with the homies. Love you all.
PS: love you Zachy

Happy birthday, Dad! Look, Mom, I made friends! There is so much green here, and I’m having the absolute time of my life in ways I never would have guessed, I have laughed until my eyes teared up, tried lots of spicy food to make my tongue go numb and have seen so many gestures to fill my heart! Miss you all a ton, and please don’t forget to give my cat his shot 🙂

The journey here was long and difficult, but being here is liberating. I’m in love with the lush.

Hey Mom and Dad. The sights and scenes are amazing and the group is equally so. I’m already learning and growing and I can’t wait to see you guys again. Yesterday’s waterfall hike was my favorite. Shoutout to lizard friend.

Hello. I’ve been living in the jungle, eating yummy and spicy food, sliding down mountains, experiencing rats, mastering the bucket shower, laughing a lot and having a wonderful time learning about myself and Indonesia. Miss you all.

Hey mom dad and TG I had a 12 hour drive through the mountains to the guest house in Ketambe and didn’t get motion sickness once, aren’t you proud, and had the windows down the whole time. Imagine the complete polar opposite of Houston and put it on steroids, that’s Indonesia, and I LOVE it. I’m not dead yet so stop your worrying. My abs are still sore from laughing. Miss y’all like crazy but I’m in my element.

Miss you guys! We have been in the province of Aceh. Look it up it is crazy. We are headed trekking tomorrow and I am super excited. Overall I am learning a lot and having a great time! I also really like all the students. Love you!

Hey all of y’all, I hope that you’ve had a good time while I’ve been gone and I hope mom hasn’t worried too much because of the lack of emails, but I’ve been having a really good time so far here and it’s so green and pretty, like a even amount of green as home. I’m writing this the day before my birthday, and we’re going for a trek in the jungle tomorrow so it’ll be a really good birthday experience. I love y’all and hopefully you’ll hear from me soon.

Everything in Indonesia has seemed to permeate to my core, electrifying me on a visceral level— The tingling rejuvenation born from the painful thrill of sloshing a pale of frigid water over my head first thing in the morning; the sensation of fire bubbling atop my tastebuds after bathing my delectable lunch in Sambal sauce every afternoon; the rush of amazement conjured by the pink conflagration that suffuses through the horizon, commemorating the plunging sun every evening… If the 20 hour plane ride and 10 hour bus journey here felt like a hazy dream of anticipation, arriving in Aceh, Indonesia has felt like a crisp awakening into adventure. To my family: I love you and miss you guys so much and wish you were here, but I’m thinking of you and carrying you with me through every experience <3

What’s good, fam? Hope all is well. Indonesia has been surreal so far. We’ve been in the province of Aceh at the tip of North Sumatra. Some highlights were chilling in the river, hiking to a waterfall, conversing with the beyond friendly locals, and even getting my first interview and witnessing a duck go down for dinner. Going into the jungle for three days. I’ll catch you soon.

Hi! It’s been a wild, wonderful first week. The thirteen of us dragons students have been learning how to travel these twelve weeks together as global and aware leaders. We’re already experiencing the joys of being a traveler, not a tourist. My favorite part has been laughing, especially while hand washing laundry or sliding down a hill on our bums or talking about our poop scales. I love and miss you all so much.