Okay, okay….if you are one of my UK friends….you know this picture isn’t actually from Liverpool. But here’s the thing…I don’t take very many pictures and this is one of the few “scenic” types I have from the UK – so close enough. (The other one I was going to use was from a beautiful cemetery…but then I looked at the title I had just written and thought that it might send the wrong message about what I mean by “Farewell Tour.”
Background Story: Back in 1998 (geez….) I started a May Term in Liverpool, England with a colleague. Our students took a Hope class in Liverpool and did their clinical experiences in a local school. Over the years, we added a component in which students from Liverpool Hope University would come to Hope College and I would work with them…and then they would be placed in Holland area schools.
Fast forward: On Saturday I depart for Liverpool for my final year of working with Hope College students there. It will be a bittersweet time. I have come to think of Liverpool as a second home – with many wonderful memories and some incredible friends. My nearly annual visits have been a highlight of many years. But…I also want this program to continue, so it’s time to get some of the younger faculty to take ownership of the program and to step away. And so it begins….the final year. (I’ll surely be posting updates on Facebook. As I type, I am nearly certain the infamous urban foxes that populate this lovely area are plotting ways to stalk me in the dark – always an “exciting” wet my pants moment.)
Just returned from a May term on the Rosebud Reservation in Mission, South Dakota. It was a GREAT trip with a wonderful group of students and my Hope bud/colleague Susan Cherup. (There the wildlife adventures were restricted to buffalo crossing the street in front of us…and some rather large snakes. Both are best viewed from a distance! Actually, the most dangerous part of that trip was playing “spoons” with the Hope students on a few occasions. We are talking vicious rip the spoon out of your hand and throw yourself on top of the table to get a spoon games. I often had to remind them that nearly injuring your professor for a spoon was hardly appropriate. They didn’t seem to give a shit. Surprise.)
A quick health update: Tee and I met with my oncologist on Tuesday. All continues to be stable – news I am always relieved to get! (Despite my disdain for using cliches, “Life is good.”)
So…time to finish packing. Just wanted to do a quick update in response to some kind requests for the latest…..