Jill Dobbe’s book, Here We Are & There We Go – Teaching and Traveling with Kids in Tow is a delightful book that had me reminiscing about all my own travels overseas. It really should be required of people who decide to travel overseas for work.
Ms. Dobbe brings the life of an international educator up close and personal by real sharing adventures her family had in Guam, Singapore, Ghana and Mexico.
It is a wonderful insight not only from the perspective of the traveling teacher, but the last chapter of the book which talks about reverse culture shock is equally important for family members and friends to read. It is sometimes hard to understand what a former traveling family has to adjust to when returning back to the United States. Ms. Dobbe’s book does a remarkable and realistic job of taking us into the mindset of the returnees and the challenges faced by those who come home only to find that ‘home’ is no longer familiar.
I loved the way Here We Are & There We Go portrayed life on the road with children. From the craziness on long international flights, to the crankiness of jet lag in unfamiliar settings, Dobbe leaves out none of the unpleasant moments or the pure joys of having children grow up as citizens of the world. I could feel the pride she had of having her two small children sing in Mandarin for a group of Chinese tourists. Memories like that can’t be bought. And, they are exclusive to those who venture outside their own borders.
This is an important book for everyone who is considering a career in international education, but it is just as important for those who stay behind. It allows us to live vicariously, if only for a few hours, through the eyes of those who dare to hear the call of adventure and to act.
I have wanderlust incredibly so. I am also a mother to young children. I have been trying to wrap my mind around how to combine worldly travel and young children for a while now. I really liked how Jill presented their adventures in this tale. She did not sugar coat life or their travels. She provided a nice account of their life as it unfolded for them. I appreciated that. A part that spoke to me was when Jill was in a train station right before rush hour. She could not get her son to cooperate and get in his stroller. She feared he would be trampled by the crowds as they disembarked from the trains so she rammed him with the stroller. Only in his crying fit was she able to get him to safety. This really spoke to me and I understood that sometimes you have to make the choice for you children that might cause them some initial sadness but is ultimately chosen for the greater good. I think Jill and Dan made wonderful choices by living abroad with their children. I really enjoyed reading her account and it has sparked a fire inside me. Perhaps we shall cross paths someday.
This is a true to life story of a couple, both teachers, who raised their two children, Ian and Ali, while traveling around the world. Author Jill Dobbe and her husband Dan did not let their two young children stop them from traveling around the world. From their native Wisconsin their first stop was the island of Guam, in the picturesque village of Inarajan, where they endured not only the unruly behavior of their students but also the wrath of hurricane Yuri. This was just the start of a life of travels and adventures that will take them to more than thirty countries around the world. In the process they get to meet prominent personalities, learn languages and adapt to the most bizarre of customs and traditions. Going back to Wisconsin, they found out that home has a different meaning for them.
"Here We Are & There We Go" is a memoir of a family, traveling around the world to work and, above all, to live. Growing up in a small town in Wisconsin, Jill Dobbe dreams of exploring the world and marriage and children do not dampen her lust for travel. And with her cooperative husband, she fulfills her dream of traveling around the world, with two little children in tow. Working as teachers, they lived abroad and traveled to other places too. What comes out is a story that is filled with jet lag, diapers, and experiences that are sometimes funny, sometimes scary, but always entertaining. From the Pacific to Africa and back to the states, the author regales us with a story that not only crosses continents but also crosses cultures. I find Jill Dobbes' style charming and very conversational so that after reading the book, I feel as if I am talking to a good friend about her unforgettable adventures. Everyone with the itch to travel should read this book.