Today is also the last day of my trip-of-a-lifetime. My husband and I celebrated 20 years of marriage in Tahiti, and let me just say, it was everything I had hoped it would be, and so much more. I gave a lot of thought as to how I wanted to wrap up this experience and, as usual, was inspired by something that happened at school. A few weeks ago, my fellow teachers, staff members, and I participated in a fun exercise called "Never Have I Ever..." The basic gist goes like this: everyone is seated except one person. That one person say, "Never have I ever..." and names something he or she has never done. Everyone who hasn't done that gets up and scrambles to find a new seat. The one left standing is the next person to share, "Never have I ever..." It's a really fun way to get to know each other a little bit. So, in honor of both my time in Tahiti, and my work friends at Schiesher and Tate Woods Elementary schools, I leave you with this lists of "firsts" in a similar form.
Before Tahiti, never had I ever...
- traveled below the equator
- met and named a puffer fish (we'll miss you, Albus!)
- snorkeled off the deck to my room
- seen the ocean through the floor - and glass-topped coffee table- of my room
- eaten passion fruit
- had breakfast delivered by canoe
- swam in an infinity pool
- slept comfortably on an airplane
- had a drink with coconut in it (not a fan of coconut, but this was surprisingly tasty!)
- had a sunset be a major, multi-hour, multi-color, wonderous event
- had an ocean view from my bathroom
- had a run-in with a feisty crab while walking down a path (little guy was FIERCE)
- snorkeled with a rainbow of fish who let me be part of their "school"
- witnessed a Marquesan warrior dance
- watched an actual chicken cross an actual road (I swear, it happened. He was chasing a hen and crossed right in front of our rental car. Maybe THAT'S the reason why the chicken crossed the road!)
- been to a famous surf spot where the World Surfing League holds an annual contest. If you surf (as my California-raised husband does) this is a big deal. The black sands and monster waves of Teahupo'o are spectacular!
- been this far away from my kid (can't wait to see you, Bug!)
- been floored with love and gratitude for my family who moved mountains to make this trip happen (Chance and Lisa, you are my heroes!)
I hope this post doesn't sound like a humble-brag. These experiences: the writing, the trip, the writing about the trip, have all left me changed, grateful, and growing in new directions. To be honest, I wasn't sure I'd be able to blog daily because of this trip, but I wanted to try, and I'm incredibly thankful that I did. A massive thank you to all of the wonders at Two Writing Teachers for creating the space for us to share and support each other.