Like just about everything, this year took a village

We are in Cape Town at the end of our June road trip.  Is it allowed to have this much fun?










We even managed to connect with my “shirt-tail relative” Shawn Buck for a day at Cape Point.


Shawn is in his second year serving as a volunteer with the Ubuntu Football Academy.  The program uses soccer, mentoring, and academic support to nurture the next generation of leaders.  Shawn showed us the organizational system used at the house where some boys live while attending school.



It’s our second to the last day before we fly to Pietermaritzburg to gather our belongings before flying back to the U.S.

Three hundred sixty five days we got to do this.  A big long year and the blink of an eye.  How could it be swift and full and gradual, beginning and finishing, all at the same time?  I know we will be contemplating what this year has meant for a long time to come.

We certainly are overdue offering some thank-yous, because like all life events this one took the support of many people!  Specifically we needed: Erin and others who taught my classes at the Fargo Adult Learning Center; Scott’s colleagues who covered his courses, advising, and committees; my Mom who stored our car and kept us going with letters all year; the Keals who sent us off with a Christmas party last June and then managed our house and yard; Scott’s folks who helped make the banking work; teachers, friends, and neighbors who sent news in emails and letters.  Thank you to all of these people and to each of you, readers, who have followed along and commented on our blog this year.

What about the blog?  This is something we have discussed in recent days.  It feels like this space of recording our year should end with our physical departure from South Africa.  But we have also talked about how we will continue to be shaped by what has happened here even after returning to North Dakota.  The “stats” page reports that we’ve accumulated 76 posts, some 123 regular readers in ten countries, and over 350 comments during the last year.  Amazing!  As much as blogging was a means of updating you about our experiences, it was also a centering place for me (and sometimes all of us) to explore and process those experiences.  For that reason, we’ve decided not to conclude things here.  We’ll stay open to the likelihood that stories will continue to unfold and need a place to land.



8 thoughts on “Like just about everything, this year took a village

  1. Sounds like a fantastic experience in so many ways. Great idea to keep the blog open to later reflections!
    Safe travels to Pietermaritzburg, Minneapolis, and Fargo!!


  2. Amy, Scott and kids…Thank you for sharing your big adventure in this beautifully written blog. It’s been super fun to come along with you…safe travels home. Deb Van De Weghe


  3. What an amazing year it has been and how much fun I have had being one of your loyal followers. I look forward to the Tuesday postings. Will also look forward to giving you all a hug when we see you for a moment in Minneapolis! Safe travels. Sending Minnesota hugs, Gail


  4. Amy, I’m glad there may be some additional blog entries, as I’ve thoroughly enjoyed following your adventures this year. Honestly, you write so beautifully and your posts are so thoughtful that I’ve been secretly wishing that after your return you’d start a new blog about adventures in North Dakota. Thank you for sharing your journey this year.


  5. My friend Gustavo Lacerda had similar ideas about the arinoeutatgmn part, though he may have failed to combine it with Uberfact. So, when do you start your startup?PS: is your language thing crazier than TUNES?


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