We are currently sitting in the Seattle airport waiting for our flight to Minneapolis. We left Holden yesterday morning and spent the night in Wenatchee, WA. It was hard to leave Holden. Every time the bus leaves the village, the entire community gathers to wave goodbye until the bus is out of sight. Seeing everyone waving to us was bittersweet. It was sad to say goodbye to the people that have been so important to our J-term experience, but it was also amazing to think about all of the connections we have made in just three weeks.
Something I didn't realize about Holden before going there is that the community is incredibly fluid. Every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, some people leave and others arrive. Somehow, the spirit of Holden always feels the same. I think this makes the Holden J-term trip unique. The experience did not end when we left. It is still there, open to us if we ever want to go back. Several villagers made sure to tell us that we are now "Holdenites." We are forever part of the special little community tucked in the Cascade mountains. Some people in the group have been contemplating going back to Holden to work on staff. Whether or not this happens for any of us, I am encouraged that if we end up there in a few months or in several years, we will be greeted with open arms.
Thanks for following along with our travels. We'll see you back in the Midwest in a few hours.