Free Spirited American Volunteers

I always love to have volunteers from the United States of America because I adore the country, the freedom, and liberty. So when American volunteers come, it is very delightful to me to ask them about anything related to their country. The first American volunteer that I got at the learning center is Ian Alfaro from Hawai, but his family is from Mexico so he is also a Mexican. He is a surfer anyway and he brought his surfboard to our learning center, he did surf at Balian Beach.

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Next, I met a couple from Washington, USA. They are Lisa Beck and Daniel Kirkpatrick. They are married with three children, their oldest son is in the same as me. I also asked them to be my American parents, and they said yes. They are very nice and kind. Once they asked me about teaching my sons English then I said that my sons had a speech delay, they cheered me up and Daniel told me a story about some different animal, for example, a rabbit, a snake, a chicken, a bird, a fish, a frog who are taught to swim, to fly and to walk. In the swimming lesson, none of them can swim except fish and frog. Next, in the flying lesson, none of them can fly except a bird, even the chicken is hardly fly. At last in the walking lesson, none of them can walk except a chicken, the rabbit jumps and the snake slithers.

He said that the moral story was every child has his own skill and ability timing, so I shouldn’t worry about the speech delay happen to my sons. It is a very heart-warming story that ever given to me to cheer me as a mom. In fact, Daniel and Lisa are education consultants. So they work to train people, to train students, to set or design a school program and so on. They also run an international school. Daniel also an Aikido practitioner, so he taught the kids and me about Aikido. It is totally a coincidence because I am truly interested in Aikido since a long time ago I watched an actor who practiced Aikido because it is the only martial art that is used to defend yourself not to “attack”. And yes it is true Aikido is the harmony of energy.

Although Daniel and Lisa are old and ugly (hahaha this was Daniel idea) but they are really fun and adventurous! Then after Daniel and Lisa, there was Shannon Breslin from Chicago. She works at California right now. She was just graduated from university when she came volunteering at our learning center. She has a cheerful and positive attitude. Shannon loves to play soccer, she is really sporty. Once I ran with her in the hills and she could keep going running uphill and downhill faster than me. I told her that she’s got log slim legs like a horse! Haha she is indeed tall. When we ran together she was afraid of the dogs barking at us and she used me to cover her LOL!

Thanks to Hannah Spencer from NZ who took this picture

After Shannon, there was an adult volunteer who works as a speech therapist and as a secondary school teacher (I think it a high school). She is not really American because she is a Russian who moved to the USA. Her name is Laura Kovalenko. She is a yoga enthusiast too! Like me. We have the same interest in exercise and workouts, the difference is just she can do difficult yoga poses while I still can’t hahaha. I have ever consulted about my son speech delay and she advised me very well. She is very open and friendly. The way she taught the kids make me learn how to teach better. I even invited her to come to the English lesson of my private student and we played continuing story with the dice. Laura lives in New York! Yeah, New York my dream city. I want to visit NYC someday, I will just call Laura to pick me up from Ellis Island. Laura said that the statue of Liberty is close to her home. Wow!

Who is going to be the next American volunteer that I would meet at the Learning Center Eka Chita Pradnyan? I don’t know, we’ll see. From them, I got many souvenirs. It is funny because Shannon and Laura gave me the same thing: bracelet. Shannon gave me a brown mosquito repellent bracelet while Laura gave me a white bracelet. And they almost look the same braided bracelet! Just in different colors. Daniel and Lisa gave me the most things that I really like: American Magazine! Besides that, they also gave me a foldable magnifying glass and mechanical flashlight (without battery but using our muscle to turn on the light) for an outdoor activity. Even more, Daniel wrote me a credit as an English teacher! Thanks a lot for the gifts, I will keep them and remember you always in my heart.

💕 Intan Rastini

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