High school graduation means our Chilean "son" Emilio will be leaving Fortuna in the next few days. Even though we only had him from November through mid-March, we learned quite a lot. We learned much about communication and many times, a lack of it. Emilio spoke in broken English, but he came a long way in his time here. He could barely form a sentence when he arrived in August. He spent Christmas in Oregon with us, bowled in Cresent City, and endured our cultural and community service outings. We learned a lot about Playstation 3, beat box Hip-Hop style vocalizations and dressing for prom. I guess, he came Americanized before he even arrived here. And, my God, the boy could eat. Emilio joined the other two-dozen foreign exchange students from Rotary District 5130 this weekend at the district conference held here in Fortuna. As he took his place upon stage while bearing his native flag from Chile, I knew I would never see Emilio again. Funny thing, his brother is coming to Eureka next year!
After Kate had Simone from Switzerland and Pernille from Denmark, and together, we hosted Horice (Miley) from France, we learned teenagers are pretty much teenagers from whatever part of the world they come from, raging hormones, growth spurts and all.
In August, we welcome Pedro from Brazil to our corner of the world.