Finals, Fun, Future / by Joshua P Jacks

Finals have come and gone, and graduation was last night. Josh and I have to yet again say “see you soon” to students that we have grown close to.  Last semester, Josh wondered if he would be able to like a class as much as he did his first one.  As this semester unfolded the answer is, “yes, he can”.  We had our final English club here at the house.  Since I was going through a week of homesickness and, well bluntly put, selfishness, we didn’t do an American style meal.  We did it Lao style.  If you want to know how to get out of a slump, just stop thinking about yourself. Start thinking about others, and soon you will forget about your own little complaints that you saw your heart becoming overwhelmed with.  English club at the house is exactly what I needed.  There were about 20 students. Around 4 came early to help with baked goods and the soup we made.  Then after we ate, I sat around and watched as all the students played games, laughed, played with Noah, and just enjoyed each other’s company.  I ended the night feeling disappointed that this had not been a weekly event at our house.  There were just so many great kids in Josh’s classes this semester. We hope we stay in touch this summer to build better friendships and connections with the students.

Graduation was great also.  I was able to stick around for about half of it.  When they had Josh come up to pass out his certificates, the whole room started cheering!  They really do love him as a teacher.  They ended the graduation with ice cream and showing students their final exam grades.  Then we all gathered as ARDA staff for dinner at our friend’s café celebrated a few of our friend’s birthdays. 

We have been here for 2 semesters already. Time has really gone fast.  We will have a month off and then right back to teaching a 5 week summer course.  We have friends and family coming to visit this summer and a trip to Thailand next week. Our summer will conclude with a regional team retreat/fellowship/council in Cambodia!  Fun times ahead!  Hope you continue to journey with us. We do enjoy walking with you!