Hana, who was 23 when she came to work with us, rode her bike across town, shook her curls out of the helmet and sat down at the 1950s big wood desk that was given to the university by the Hogg family. She designed our newsletter, grew close and sometimes too close with our students. She scrubbed pots in the sink after class that year we kept things going by having Amanda cook us meals at her house and deliver them for students each night. She asked the questions of a new college graduate and moved tables from the stage and into a big circle. That was the year we held class in a high school cafeteria and the bells pierced the room three times each night. It was the year I spent months traveling back and forth to San Antonio while my father was dying. Hana was in the classroom while I paced the parking lot hearing the latest news. Five years later, she comes to visit, walks down the street with her curls popping out of her green hat, tells stories of a life on the coast so much calmer, so much better and, miraculously, I do too.
January 14, 2015