Archive for December, 2010

I have a wedding to attend the day before I leave for my time in Jamaica, and it’s not just any wedding, it’s my son, Aaron, and his fiancée Becky’s wedding…. a VERY important day in both their and my life.  They will marry and I will leave but how will I deal with that?  I won’t be there when they return from their honeymoon to ooh and aah over their pictures and hear all of their stories about Punta Cana.  I will be in Montego Bay with my team from Trinity and will then be getting settled into my home away from home, traveling to the embassy in Kingston to pick up my teaching materials, attending a CCCD board meeting in Knockpatrick and then teaching at Sam Sharpe Teacher’s College.  I’m so thankful that Rick will be able to spend 5 days with me, getting  me settled and driving with me to Kingston.  Getting to Kingston and the embassy is an adventure that I will happily share with Rick, and as they say, “leaving the driving to him.”


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Am I ready to spend 4-5 months teaching Deaf Education and Special Education at Sam Sharpe Teachers’ College in Granville, Jamaica, via a Fulbright Scholarship?  Well, I’ve sent four boxes of textbooks, videos and DVDs to the embassy in Kingston, began thinking about exactly how many pairs of sandals, cotton skirts, t-shirts, and swim suits I really need for my time in Jamaica, and purchased a backup computer and small personal printer.  My suitcases are half full already and I don’t know if there is any way that I can fit everything I think I will need in the two suitcases that I will be taking and the additional two that Rick, my husband, will be bringing one week later.  I know how expensive it is to purchase things as taken for granted as shampoo in Jamaica so I continually make lists in my mind of everything I might need (or is it want) for the next 4 months of my life.  Whatever ends up in my suitcase by January 9 will make its home in Jamaica until May 11.

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Jamaica feels like a second home to me.  The first time I flew into Sangster airport in Montego Bay in 2001 with a group of Trinity students, I immediately knew that my soul was connected to this country and these people.  Ten years and 13 trips later, part of my heart remains in Jamaica every time I visit, but for this trip, I will be doing more than visiting…I will be living and working with and among both old friends and yet to be discovered friends.

I first received the call to take students from Trinity Christian College to the Caribbean Christian Centre for the Deaf in Granville, Jamaica (a small town just outside of Montego Bay) after hearing a friend from Hope College share about her upcoming trip to CCCD.  The seed was planted and I began dreaming of taking my own group of students to work at CCCD.  For me my passions of deaf education, international travel, the sun and sea and working with college students all came together in this opportunity afforded me by both a Fulbright Scholarship and a spring sabbatical from Trinity Christian College:  As Fredrick Buchner says, “The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.”

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