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Xinyue Pan

I still remember the day when I arrived in the U.S. It was my first time visiting a foreign country. I had two suitcases that were heavier than myself. I had no credit card, no Google Map, no Uber app, and the only thing I had was a phone number of Michele. Michele picked me up from the airport. On our way, she told me about I-495, why buildings in DC cannot be taller than the Monument, the double-deck tour bus that I should take, and more that I didn’t fully understand. Then she and Nava magically took out a plastic bag, containing a bread, two apples, and a bottle of milk, which had kept me alive for the first two days on this land.

Now I’ve been living in the U.S. for four years, but my migrating has never stopped between different fields of research, different stages of career, and different forms of life. Every time when I step on a new land and feel at a loss, I find Michele’s number. I know that she will always find me, guide me through the way, and book me a bus tour, on which I can start exploring the world myself. I know that she will always feed me when I starve, but also cheer for the Mapo Tofu that I cook. I can never speak enough about how grateful I am to Michele. I will not say farewell because I know Michele will always have my back no matter where she is and where I go. I feel so lucky to be one of Michele’s students at the University of Maryland and for a lifetime.

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