Wow. Its already mid January! This year is going to fly by. My contract is up in September and I am going to maximize the time I have left out here. Where will I go next . . . I have no idea. Since moving to Saipan I have learned to live in the moment.
Dr. Khorram and Angelo tagged me to list 20 things I remember about Saipan. I've only been on island for a year so I can't tell you much about what landmarks have changed. So I'll list 20 things I remember about my first year in Saipan.
1. I remember Ken and Crystal Pierson, the dental clinic staff, and the SDA student teachers patiently waiting for me at the airport at 1 o'clock in the morning to welcome me to Saipan. Everyone looked like they rolled out of bed! I felt so loved.
2. I remember my first heavy betelnut case! It was like layers of tar that would not come off. The other hygienists chuckled and said "welcome to Saipan".
3. I remember my sweet Korean neighbors, Lizzie and Pastor Dewie. They often invited me over for dinner and always checked up on me. I'll never forget their kindness.
4. I remember joining the Fall beach volleyball league at PIC when I first arrived. I didn't know anyone and ended being drafted on one of the top teams that made it into the playoffs undefeated! I made so many great friends.
5. I remember seeing Moreno with the kids on a Saturday afternoons getting ready to do a hike with them. He inspired me to work more with the youth.
6. I remember singing in choir and practicing long hours for our Christmas concert last year.
7. I remember my first breathes underwater at Sugardock during Scuba lessons.
8. I remember date night with Grant, Mai, Missy, Layla, and Brit.
9. I remember watching sunrise at Bonzai Cliff and seeing sea turtles below.
10. I remember snorkeling under a starry sky with Moretti looking for coral spawning.
11. I remember dollar veggie tacos and iced tea on Oleai's terrace after diving on Sundays.
12. I remember camping at Managaha Island and bonfires on the beach.
13. I remember teaching good oral hygiene at the elementary schools. Hearing the kids laugh was worth all the work.
14. I remember the infinite pool and watching sunsets at the Mandi Asian Spa.
15. I remember tank swims with Crystal and Ken on Friday afternoons.
16. I remember paddling Tuesdays and Thursdays from Kilili Beach along the reef before sunset after work.
17. I remember Malou's tasty breadfruit dessert.
18. I remember my long walks and runs along Beach road.
19. I remember potluck lunches after Church.
20. I remember thinking I would only stay in Saipan for one year. But I am now four months into my second year.
So there you have it. 20 things I remember about last year. My second year only keeps getting better.