OK, here's the dish:
I'm having a terrible day. I mean, flat-out rotten. The guilty events include, but are not limited to: getting flipped off by a stranger, being turned down for an internship, being told that my application for research wasn't accepted because my research "didn't seem like a priority to me," and getting a parking ticket.
So I took an hour and a half nap after, honestly, bawling for a good half hour. I'm not ashamed: crying releases stress somehow (I remember learning this, but can't remember when).
Anyway, I woke up and checked my email.
Sitting there, in my inbox, was an email from my Argentinean tutee, Jose.
Let me provide some context: the first semester of my first-year at Augsburg, I tutored English at the Franklin Learning Center. For most of my time at the center, I tutored a man named Jose, who was here from Argentina, studying English.
He was a very, very kind man.
And the email I got today was doubly kind. He called me his "dear English teacher," and told me how he's almost done reading a book--entirely in English. He also expresses his wish to visit the U.S. again, or have me visit him in Argentina.
This wasn't, of course, our first email correspondence. We've been emailing off-and-on since he went back to Argentina, in January of 2008. But the emails are always far between.
In his emails, Jose often comments on the kindness of the people in Minneapolis, goes on and on about how much he loves to learn new words in English, and tells me I am a beautiful, smart young woman.
No more than a couple hours ago, I was feeling extremely down on my luck. I still am. But Jose's email definitely lifted my spirits.
I guess the "moral" of this story is that it's experiences like tutoring someone from another country that can make a big difference in your outlook on things, even in little, relatively inconsequential ways like this.
Thank you, Jose.