January 30, 2012, Washington, DC: Dear Australia, How on earth has it been so long since we met face to face? How it is possible it's been precisely twelve years to the day since I first boarded that plane headed for Sydney? I remember it well: January 30, 2000, the Superbowl just getting started as our flight departed from Los Angeles. We missed the game that day. We missed January 31, too. All of it. An entire day erased from the calendar. It was February when we landed.
Dear Australia, In the six months we lived in Brisbane, your landscape became our playground. Our lessons extended far beyond campus, and traveling your cities and countryside became the ultimate in experiential education. For an adventurous group of students already energized by their surroundings, you put us over the edge. We have you to thank for the enthusiasm we've brought to every place we've experienced since.