Last week, Dionne was on her way to an anthropology conference in DC but couldn't attend as both DC airports were closed due to inclement weather. Fortunately for me, I re-routed her to stay with me in SLC. Prob not ideal for her since she dislikes Utah (yes, the entire state...).
As I haven't seen Dionne in exactly a year, I was MUY (Selena anyone?) excited to catch up with her. I cooked dinner (pork ribs! redic good btw...), showed her some SLC eating spots and even watched lots of tv while talking about everything that's happened this past year. Last Thursday, Dionne was invited to speak at an Ethics class at the University of Utah highlighting a documentary she made in 2007. I was so beyond proud at how she easily navigated questions from the class into a forum discussing cinematic perception of Pacific Islanders through the lens of a Samoan filmmaker.
That next morning, I flew out to Vegas for the Rugby 7s tournament. I invited Dionne to join me but she declined opting instead to rest and work on personal entrepreneurial projects. While I had a great (read: AMAZING) time in Vegas, I realized just how much more mature Dionne is. Not to say she wasn't mature before. But she was willing to sacrifice some Vegas-fun to focus on more important long-term goals. Combined with her performance in the ethics class and our general conversations, I couldn't be more impressed with the amount of growth and development within one year. Not to mention being able to literally feel her excitement and passion for films-- her true niche in this world.
Next week, Dionne turns 35! (Sorry for putting you on blast! hahaha). She definitely embodies the type of passion and resilience that I hope to gain in my own life. Here's to you, sis! Preemptive Happy Birthday and to many more years of cheering you on from your corner.