The last few weeks have been pretty packed full of multicultural activities and interactions for me. I was amazed as I sat back today and thought about all the different places that I have vicariously traveled to in a short amount of time.
The first of these came with a dinner invitation from our neighbors for some authentic and home cooked Korean barbeque. Whenever our neighbor gets homesick she pulls out her grill and we were the lucky benefactors of her cooking. The meal was fantastic and the company was perfect. I loved listening to her tell us all about Korea and the area that she came from.
Part of my job at the university is organizing events and activities for our international student population. These events are big and take a lot of work to put together and I have had two such events in the last couple of weeks.
The first of these events was an Indian Holi Color Festival. We had colorful chalk being thrown everywhere to the upbeat Indian music in the background. It was an absolute blast of color and fun.
The next big event that I organized was a break the fast dinner for Ramadan. There was a lot of food, a speaker from the local mosque, and a beautiful display of flags of Muslim dominate countries.
In between these two big events, our office had some visitors come from Vietnam. One was originally from the UK while the other was Vietnamese. I spent a day taking them on a tour of Nashville and in return they told me about their life and business there in Hanoi.
After the events and the tour of Nashville, the next big thing for me to put together is our international graduation. We always have our own international ceremony before the big graduation of the whole school. Part of the international graduation is that we give sashes to each student that represent the countries they come from. I was getting the sashes put together and it was such a beautiful representation of all the different countries that our students are from.
And speaking of graduation…I will be joining the celebration of graduates this semester! I have my last paper to complete and then I will graduate with my Master’s degree. My paper is on Celtic symbols and their history, meaning, adaptations, and resurgence into popular culture. So when I’m not working on cultural events for the students, I’m diving into the ancient Celtic culture. Only 4 more weeks till it is all said and done.
I guess if I can’t be traveling to all these places right now, the next best thing is to have small moments of enjoying the cultures in whatever way I can. It has been kind of a whirlwind of events and experiences lately, but what a fantastic ride it has been too.