In the interim

by Sarah Luna

Hello from Mumbai!

There are some moments in life where you step back and appreciate the randomness in your life. I had one of those moments right around Binghamton yesterday driving in the freezing rain in a black rental Chrysler with a boy I probably would never have met except through research towards the Newark airport and a flight to Mumbai.

Since it’s been a while since I’ve written here, let me catch you up. My time in Rwanda was expectedly cut short for multiple reasons that would not surprise anyone who has worked internationally.  The three of us received the final news on my birthday, February 8, that we could leave Kigali. We were given a carte blanche for the next two weeks and were told to meet in Mumbai on March 1. One of the boys decided to fly to India early to explore the southern regions. I decided to go back to Ithaca.

It isn’t often that I get two weeks off. It might not happen again while I remain a grad student. While I enjoyed my time in Rwanda and like to think that I have a travelling spirit, I was exhausted and bored and lonely. I missed my friends. I missed my house. I missed having control of my life.  Therefore, I gave up two weeks of “vacation” in favor of my normal, hectic, grad student life.

I arrived in Ithaca on the afternoon of February 15th. It was thirty degrees, and I had no coat. Eric and I took the bus into town. He got off at an earlier stop. It was strange to finally be on my own after a month.  I trudged home with my backpack and ukulele. The first time back in my house, I simply walked around looking at everything.  The richness of it all overwhelmed me: painted walls, hardwood floors, carpet in my room, warmth from the heater.

I quickly got back into my dancing routine (though it took a couple of days for me to be able to dance straight). I just happened to come home in time for two ballroom competitions: Binghamton and MADC.

I got 8th place in Gold Standard Foxtrot/Tango with a wonderful TBA partner at Binghamton.

And the following week at MADC, I danced with Josef and completed nine consecutive double reverse spins in waltz (I don’t expect that to make sense. Just know that it was really cool.)

I had a lovely time back in Ithaca seeing good friends and just getting  a handle on life. Now I’m off on my next adventure!