Memories of Louisville. To come: memories of the Baltic?
As the beauty of autumn falls upon us, we want to say “Happy New Year”. I think many of us are basically academically oriented, ready to begin again with new September activities—either at home, school, or work, ready to turn to new venues.
However, some memories of the past season remain. Many members recall with pleasure our Annual Meeting in Louisville. Thus we can look at our shiny new 2011 calendars anticipating more events that will leave delightful memories. Among these will be the Beautiful Baltic Study Tour in the summer and the Indiana Annual Meeting in the fall.
Why should FIC be such an important travel/study/learning experience for us? In this age of globalization when everyone seems to be engaged in e-mail, facebook, twitter, blogs, etc., why then should a people organization be necessary? Yes, it does seem that everyone is somehow or other connected with the world –through writing, photographing, listening to music, etc. However, there is something called relationships-–face-to-face speaking, sharing eye contact, shaking hands, giving hugs and reading facial expressions that are very human contacts that no technological device can replace. Do we seem to be losing the very foundations of our memories – finding other people in our world, city, community with whom we can get to appreciate, respect, accept as friends?
It’s always delightful to see buildings, parks, natural phenomena, but perhaps it is more meaningful to become acquainted with people who inhabit these areas. That’s what FIC continues to be about: meeting folk, respecting differences and celebrating similarities. We do this by visiting parts of our own cities, going to states close to us, yet never seen before, together with countries across the seas. The people that we rub shoulders with on a one-to-one basis are the sources of our real recollections. These are people with whom we can create true relationships. We are grateful to FIC for providing us with the opportunities to acquire such lasting memories.