I recently returned from my first airplane trip in over two years. I attended the American Educational Research Association conference held on beautiful Kumeyaay homeland (San Diego). It was a blessing to return to this special place that nurtured me for so many years, including when I had the honor of attending a class at Kumeyaay Community College and learning Kumeyaay Ethnobotany from a wise and kind Elder, “Auntie” Jane Dumas, and her devoted apprentice Richard Bugbee. Their kind and generous way of teaching and enacting Indigenous pedagogy remains strong in my memory, and is a model I strive to uphold. 

Kumeyaay lands are far from my home. It takes four flights total for me to travel there and return. 

On my last flight segment back, I felt my spirit sing as I began to see the sites I think of as home: snow covered mountains reaching up from the continent and touching the sky; a seemingly endless sea of evergreen trees, strong roots holding them in place; pristine mountain lakes lovingly carrying water for all of us to use and enjoy later in the year—maybe your thirst will be quenched with this water; maybe your child, niece, or nephew will learn to swim in this water; or maybe in this water you’ll catch a fish who is willing to help fill your stomach and renew your spirit. 

I love to travel. 

And I love to return home. 

I’m wishing you well in all the places you find yourself today. 

Photo credit: “Mt. Adams from Mt. Rainier” by mikeyskatie is marked withCC BY-SA 2.0.

Do you have memories or ideas you’d like to engage with creative writing? Learn how and enjoy community and support in the Creative Writing Class I’m teaching in May 2022! We’re meeting for live sessions via Zoom every Wednesday in May at 12-12:50pm pacific time. Registration includes year round access to our online platform so you can continue to grow as a writer! Learn more and register here.

Free event on Tuesday, May 3 at 3pm Pacific! I’ll be speaking about The Auntie Way with the Deschutes Public Library via Zoom. Learn more and get the free link to register here.

Published by Michelle M. Jacob

Owner of Anahuy Mentoring

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