The hallways are quiet this Friday morning. The record-high enrollment of the year seems a fantasy. Most desks sit empty in the high school wing.
No, the bus drivers haven't gone on strike again. We've been spared serious bouts of sickness so far. Today is not a national holiday. Why the dramatically low attendance at ICSB?
In this case, kids are missing because "I" stands for International. For a small, international school like ours, sporting opponents are hard to come by. Clusters of schools form quick and busy tournaments so that more teams will come and play. An away game is away. The girls' volleyball teams along with coaches, parents, and siblings are driving 5 hours west to Salzburg, Austria for a Friday-Saturday tournament.
Because we are an international community and many of us long for rare English-language events, another huge group of students and staff has driven eastward to the city of Debrecen, Hungary. The draw this time is a seminar and concert led by Hillsong Australia and Darlene Zschech.
All this travel sounds glamorous. In reality, driving to Salzburg from here is not unlike my drive from Dallas to Little Rock last weekend (for my brother's wedding). The trip to Debrecen compares to the Chicago day-trips of my childhood. Fun, but no big deal. Such is the nature of an international school in the heart of Europe.
I'll tell you, though, that just like the village-view out my classroom window, the ordinary and day-to-day of life here is still pretty special.