First Week of Training

  The week definitely went by much quicker than the weekend, probably because it was so full of activities and learning opportunities.   They warned us that Peace Corps training is called “Peace Corps Boot Camp,” and I’m starting to see why. Each Monday, Wednesday and Friday, we have language classes all day. No English…

First weekend: Starting Fresh

Time has slowed down over the last few days. On Saturday, the volunteers in my training town visited the Peace Corps office for the first time, had lunch at a local restaurant, then later went to a youth group event and joined in on the activities. It started at 3 p.m. but because we stopped…

First Day at my Host Family

Hay, Dios mio! What an exciting day! This morning we had a few more sessions before lunch, then found out what our host family assignments were going to be. We each had our names called in random order, then were handed a card that had the description of the family, if they had any animals,…

Days 2 and 3: Technical Details and a Bit of Fun

The first night in the hotel, I was FREEZING. The beds only had flat sheets to sleep under (considering the heat here, this makes complete sense!!) but the air conditioner was on pretty high and I couldn’t figure out how to turn it down. I got a blanket for the second night and it was much…

Day 1: Arrival

I don’t necessarily plan to write something every day like I have been, but it’s my way of decompressing after a busy day, and is a way to remind myself of the journey. 4:30 a.m. – Wake up I wake up in a slight panic, realizing my alarm hasn’t gone off yet (it was supposed…

Read me when you want to quit

Dear Rebecca, Remember when you were at the PC celebration event and that Returned Volunteer suggested you write your future self a note to keep you going? Here it is.   Read me when it gets too hard. -When you’re sick as a dog and all you want is your familiar bed. -When you can’t…

Last Night in the U.S. (Staging)

Tomorrow, we’re packing up and checking out at 5:30a.m. from our hotel in Miami, bussing over to the airport and flying to Colombia; Staging is over. Overview of Staging (Orientation) Staging began yesterday at 5p.m.; I checked in with my Country Desk Officer and her counterpart, and as I signed my name saying that I checked to…

5 Days Left

It’s 12:30am and I can’t sleep. I’m giving myself an hour here. I took a vacation with my family last week, and it was just perfect. I lost track of time, only spend 2 of the 7 days preparing for my travels (rather than every day…), and started a nice base for when I’m in…

Packing List: Before

I tend to be an over-packer, so this part of the process was slightly challenging for me since I was limited to 2 large suitcases, 1 carry-on and 1 personal item (unless I wanted to pay extra). I’ve heard that resources aren’t as limited in Colombia as they are in other countries that volunteers go to, so…

Packing up and Moving out

Since I decided to do the Peace Corps, I’ve known I was going to donate most of my stuff and put the essentials in storage. I started packing and prepping well before me departure date, and still find that my planning didn’t quite allow for the roller coaster of emotions that I’ve been experiencing. It’s…

7/7/2017 Notes from a pre-service conference call

Conference call – Draft of notes 7/7/17 Overview: Diverse country One of the first Peace Corps posts in 1961 Two sectors: PES (rural English education) CED (community and economic development) Commitment to service is the most important Training: 12 weeks of pre-service training The goal is to reach basic competency in culture, language, and technical…