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A Letter From My Brother

Brother unlucky came to visit.

He travelled upward of 36 hours to come and see me. And he stayed for 12 days. During those 12 days, we went to Bangkok, Koh Phi Phi, and Bali. They were all beautiful in their own ways. Bali, specifically, was magical. But, in the end, it didn’t really matter where we went or didn’t go. I was home.

It took me almost 30 years to finally realise that home is people. When he left, I cried. Like a real ugly cry where you feel like you can’t even breathe. In fact, I’d argue that it was more hyperventilation than an actual cry. The tears fell, of course, but I felt it the most in my chest.

His journey home was 46 hours. And somewhere in between all of those travels, he decided to write a little about his experience here. When he sent it to me, I cried again. I’ve decided to share it here. You may need a tissue.



Now this might come off a little odd being that she is younger, but my sister is the bravest person I know. This being said, I take my fair share of risk with street racing and entering the alligator-infested swamp hunting for ducks before the sun comes up, all the while being a sitting duck myself, to name a few. But all my risks are calculated to an extent, and are mostly for a few hours of adrenaline knowing that if all goes well, I will soon return to the comfort of my family and my corporate career. What she has done is taken a leap of faith in traveling to the unknown only knowing that she is going to dedicate her life to being an educator. Along this quest she will ultimately give back to the future generation that will shape our universe. She could have done this here in the states but would it have as big an impact? She did not think so, and now…. I am in full agreement.
Eternally grateful, and with the health afforded to me, I have had the opportunity to travel to 8 different countries this year (2018) on 3 different continents. I have seen in my travels that Asians and Europeans are on the move, always traveling. Americans on the other hand, do not travel as much as the rest of the globe(internationally). This caused me to do some researching and here is what I have found below. Can you believe 20 years ago only 15% of Americans had passports!?! The point I am trying to make is that Americans care less to find out what their footprint on the world is and what they can learn as best practices from other cultures. All the while Europeans and Asians are mimicking our best practices and even perfecting them. For example, there is now a big push in South Florida to ban straws and plastics in general to help with the pollution we are seeing in our oceans/reefs. In my travels to Costa Rica and to Thailand they have already switched to using more eco-friendly products like bamboo straws and hemp. Why not be a pioneer to these initiatives America? Oh I know, capitalistic greed. The few Americans I have met and conversed with on my travels have mutual viewpoints as the ones I am expressing.
Anyway this is not a politics rant. It’s a kudos to my courageous sister who realized this early on and moved to a region where she could make an impact on children who will eventually make the changes necessary and be the pioneers.
Since moving to Thailand she has been called upon to train the existing teachers in Montessori and to lead the transformation of the school into an Eco-sanctuary village that is self-sustainable. For the first time since she embarked on her natural holistic journey, her ideas and perspectives are being valued and she is thriving. I saw firsthand how much her students love her and enjoy coming to school! The Montessori curriculum has turned these little kids into mature adults who can have intellectual conversations and clean up after themselves. Yes, I mean washing their own dishes after lunch, turning off the lights before recess and cleaning the classroom for the next day, to name a few. Tell me how often you see this in the American public school system?
Perhaps this is what gives her the greatest feeling of warmth, so much so that not having family nearby does not sting as much because she knows the impact she is leaving on these kids.
The short time I have spent with her I have come to the realization that she is in a great place and my fears have been eased. I needed this trip perhaps more than she needed to see a familiar face. The 80 hours of roundtrip travel time was worth it so that I can use my own eye test to confirm these facts I mentioned above.
Thailand and Bali were all I could have asked for and more. God has certainly blessed their land. I cleansed naturally and ate organically. I ate as a vegan and never has the Earth tasted so good. Now I have left feeling reinvigorated, realigned and relaxed. This is everything I needed to accomplish while away on vacation and I can’t thank her enough for making me take this this trip. The trip has opened my eyes and more importantly my heart.
Be brave!

- Brother unlucky.

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