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This last weekend I went as a “chaperone” (hahaha, I know, right?) on a camping trip for leaders of international organizations at OU. It was SO MUCH FUN I CANNOT EVEN EXPRESS IT. It was a relaxing and lovely weekend, and I met twelve billion (or maybe like thirty) new people. Here are some of the highlights:

  • As we were pulling out of the parking lot, my passengers asked me if I’m a good driver. I said, “Probably. This is my first time.” They didn’t realize I was joking and were seriously alarmed at first.
  • When we arrived at the camp, everyone noted that it looked like the setting for a horror movie (though to be fair, many places do at night). I pointed out that it was a church camp, so we were probably fine. Hai (Vietnam) advised us, “If someone comes into your room at night to kill you, you must say, ‘Oh my gosh‘ instead of ‘Oh my god.‘”
  • Hai also told us fascinating stories from his childhood–fleeing angry goats and setting his neighbor’s chickens on fire.
  • A moonlit game of Ultimate Frisbee–90% of the players had never touched a frisbee before, but applied strategies (and rules and jargon) from soccer and cricket, with varying levels of success.
  • While reading in my hammock, I heard the sound of bagpipes. Playing “Highland Cathedral”! Hark! The sound of my people, I thought, and–like any good MacLeod would do–took off in search of the noise. It was surprisingly (?) easy to locate. Had a nice chat with the bagpiper.
  • I got one marriage proposal, but it was purely accidental. I suggested to a group of internats that we go on a walk, and Kaji (Bangladesh) said, “Let’s elope!” He thought it meant to run away, and didn’t realize it was specific to marriage. Bet he won’t make that mistake again.

I think a big reason why it was so much fun is that I don’t get to spend time with international students in a friendly environment anymore–often when they come to my office, they are shaking in fear or already mad at me. So it was fun to play frisbee with them and not talk about visas.