this past week i was disconnected from reality. where was i? knoxville, tennessee. every may the global finals for the program destination imagination are held here, and as a volunteer, i have the honor and privilege to work with some of my favorite people. it always passes too quickly, and there is a week of saddening withdrawal when i leave. but in those several days, when we are on our feet from sunup to sundown and catching only winks of sleep, i am the happiest i can be.
i grew up participating in destination imagination throughout grade school, nine years to be exact. the program truly did change my life, and the lessons i learned and experiences i had molded me into the person i am today. this program teaches kids of all ages how to work on a team toward a common goal, how to compromise and encourage ideas, how to manage time and people, and, most importantly, how to accept others and themselves for all the things they are. destination imagination is a program i believe in with all my heart, and i hope i can continue to be a part of it as long as they will have me.
this year i had the pleasure of reconnecting with friends from all over the country and the world, including jamie baby from michigan, brian from westfield, maria from illinois, megan and avery from pennsylvania, rachel from texas, hector from puerto rico, and adam from pittsburgh. it was also a riot to meet all my new friends like pete from denver, olivia from indiana, bailey from wisconsin, kevin from chicago, and bri and misti from arkansas. (my sincerest apologies to any folks i may have missed!) these people are my once-a-year family, and they understand me through and through. we get each other in a way that other people simply cannot, and saying goodbye to them at breakfast on sunday is always a sad moment. good thing we have memories from our challenge rooms, chicken lunches, teamwork, mug clubs, rose and the door, tony williams, #shame, RAD, james cameron films, beginning the day late and finishing early, duct tape, and an officials party that was the best yet. yes, these are all inside jokes, and no, you probably will not understand a single one of them. however, this post is for them, and this week was one for the books.
to my destination imagination family out there, i miss you all already. until next time, judy dadah!