1/21/13My Dear Students,
Tomorrow is the beginning of new adventures for all of us. For you comes a new teacher, bringing new ideas, new experiences, and new opportunities. For me comes a new country. To be honest, I’m not yet sure what all that brings, but I suppose I’m about to find out.
My coffee machine has been stored away with the message “Coffee Maker, FRAGILE, PRECIOUS, DO NOT DROP” written on the box in Sharpie, just to be safe. One can never be too cautious about these things. Your letters to me are tucked safely in my backpack, and I will read them when I am missing Valparaiso.
For the first week, I will be with family in Japan. Then, on my birthday, I will fly to my new home in Vientiane. I have never asked for a new address for my birthday, but I suppose there is a first time for everything. Maybe you should ask for an address in a foreign country for your next birthday too. The worst your parents could say is “No.”
After that point, I really am not sure what to expect. So, right now, all I can do is triple check my to-do lists. Hopefully, they will be completed by the time I fly tomorrow, just as you are finishing your lunch. By the time I touch land again, you will be fast asleep, regaining energy to continue your new adventure. You will do wonderful things, and I only hope I can do the same.