Monday, September 5, 2011
IYC Bike to Breakfast
--Cultural Exchange Program: Joanne and Richard participate in the Southwest Florida branch of Friendship Force (http://www.friendshipforceswfl.org/). It's a combined cultural exchange, social and travel organization whose motto is "Change the Way You See the World." This program of "friendship ambassadors" was created in the 1970s with the support of then President Carter. The power of the concept was officially recognized in 1992 when Friendship Force International was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize. In any event, Joanne and Richard are off to spend a month in Australia, two weeks on their own and two weeks with a host family that will give them the local view on life down under. Joanne and Richard will then serve as friendship ambassadors here in the spring, hosting a Russian couple and showing them the ins and outs on life in Southwest Florida. I'm sure that IYC will be a part of that experience.
--Cruise central: Marsha and Ray just got back from a 35 day cruise to Greenland (she confirmed that's a misnomer!), Iceland and Europe. I missed the whole story but there was something about a swimming pool and ice cubes at 11:00 at night that sounded particularly intriguing!
--Cool volunteer work: Laurie volunteers once a week at Sallie Mae elementary school, working one-on-one with kindergarteners who can benefit from some extra attention. Since I'm working at the Adult Learning Center, we had a great conversation about literacy and the differences between helping kids get a head start and helping adults achieve their educational goals later in life.
--Recommended reading: The Art of Racing in the Rain, Room and Cutting for Stone got good reviews.
I also came away with reminders of dates to put on my calendar for biking and kayaking outings, lectures, and other fun events. Even though I've only been back a few days, my September calendar is jam packed. It's great to be back in Punta Gorda!
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