lone pine
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Milton Hatoum is one of my favourite authors. He is a Manaus-based Lebanese-Brazilian writer who attempts to capture the essence of Arab diasporas in South America. My mom had one of his quotes as a catchphrase when I was growing up, using it to refer to our family's own time adapting to tropical Brazil after moving from Levantine Lebanon. It goes along the lines of "no matter where the children of the Mediterranean walk, they will always be stepping on beach sand." 

Now that I'm back to campus, away from my home in the tropics and from the Mediterranean I also learnt to call home during my FSP, this truly resonates with me. 

I remember last winter term wasn't the best time of my Dartmouth experience. I struggled in a multitude of ways: the weather made me want to stay in the whole day, I didn't have the guts to do any physical activity nor to socialise, and — even geared with appropriate clothing — I despised being out in the cold. All of this culminated in both mental and emotional tolls, making it hard for me to appreciate my time at Dartmouth. 

Honestly, I considered not coming back this term. I wanted to be away for as many winters as I could. Actually, I was meant to be in New Zealand — but I dropped out of that study abroad program as a way to prove myself that yes, I can survive Hanover's drastic weather. I am here, and here is how I survive: 

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