The Last Day of Normal (1)
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My last day of living in the Old Convent was surprisingly normal. 

It was a sunny spring day. I grabbed my bike from outside the staff house, riding alone down Mill road towards the ocean with the mountains on my left and green pastures on either side. It was a route I had biked many times before: look both ways, turn right onto Beach road with the ocean now on my left. Look both ways again before steering down the gravel driveway of my church, lock the bike, and walk around to the front of the building reading “New Life” with the symbol of the koru. 

New Life was a small church, with maybe 40 people in attendance each week, including the occasional tourists passing through and many of the students from our program. Before you even walked in the door there were one or...

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