This photo is of my mother and a friend in a village near my town. My Mom came to visit in June of 2011, and I can't express in words how excited I was to see her, to show her this amazing country, and to introduce her to my amazing colleagues, students, and friends. We went to one of my friend's villages, and there my Mom sat with us for hours at the table, in the traditional "na gosti" (guest) fashion. Drinking coffee, eating traditional Bulgarian cuisine, talking and laughing and learning new words, my Mom and I finally were able to share the stories of what had been happening in her life and in mine for the past two years. She absolutely loved learning about Bulgarian culture, and the hidden secrets of the countryside - what flowers and herbs people use for home remedies, what kinds of jokes are told in village cafes, and how people interact and show hospitality in the small towns. My Bulgarian friends, in turn, loved hearing her stories about the United States; they asked her question after question about culture in the U.S., and she graciously shared all she could. It was an incredible experience and I am so fortunate, grateful, and thankful that she was able to visit. When my two worlds came together with her and my friends' visit, I could only hope that they and my Bulgarian friends felt as happy as I did! It was absolutely amazing!!