Hello and welcome to my first attempt at blogging.
I have set this up to make staying in touch with friends and family at home easier while I am away this year. Hopefully it will cut down on the amount of writing I'll have to do and people can get updates at their convenience without inboxes being filled up. It also means that people who don't want to stay in touch don't have to. But there have been many who have asked (or insisted) that they be kept up to date on everything that happens, so here you go.
An interesting thing that has happened while setting this up is that I have realized what a diverse group of friends I have these days. There are people I have know since I was a baby and others that I have met in just the last little while. Some people know me from the Baha'i community, some know me through Christian churches and others know me from the days when I had nothing to do with religion at all. Some will be surprised to find out that I was a dancer while others know me only as a dancer. There are old people. There are young people.
All these people know me from different parts of my life so please keep this in mind as you read what I post. There is a good chance that I will either be explaining things that you didn't know about me or that I will have to go over things you know very well for the sake of everyone else. And of course this is all on top of all the new things I will be getting into.
I'd like to start by making sure everyone knows what it is I'm doing since there are some who just know that I'm going away.
This winter I will be going to Denmark for what is known as a Baha'i Year of Service. The Baha'i community has set things up so that youth can travel to different countries and spend extended time in other cultures, working with projects in those communities. This is called a year of service but it doesn't usually last a full year. The kind of work you end up doing depends on where you go and what your skills are. It could be manual labor, teaching, social development, the arts or a number of other things. In Denmark I will be working with a group of teenaged dancers who are in need of a teacher/choreographer. It was started as a Baha'i project but I have been told they are starting to get a few dancers from other backgrounds. I will be doing other things as well but this is the thing that is taking me there because it fits so perfectly with my background.
As you may or may not know by now my religion is the Baha'i Faith. I come from a family that is a mixture of Baha'i and Christian and was raised as a Baha'i. For a number of years I had very little to do with any faith but for about a year now I have gone back to being a member of the Baha'i community. I realize that I have friends who have major issues with organized religion and I would like to be respectful of that but this is a part of my life and it is what I am doing right now. Anyone who knows me well will understand that I am not trying to push this on anyone. This is, however, something I will be talking about so if anyone has a hard time with it they are welcome to just see it as a way of getting to know me better.
I think this is everything I wanted to say for now. There will be more soon.