Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Quick Update

So facebook stalking skills are coming in handy. Haha. Anyway, found the blogs of some of the other members in my group (83) who are going to Samoa. Apparently, there are twenty-two of us in our group; twenty are in our twenties, and two are older than fifty.

A few of their blog posts talk about sad goodbyes and going-away parties. Yep, been there. I was trying to avoid thinking about that though. Even though this is going to be amazing, I can't help but wish I could go to a GWO concert, another play in Anderson, or just grab a capuccino from the Courtyard Cafe and head to the library to do homework.
Suite 16

I know I said pictures would come later, but here are a couple from the going-away weekend that was last Saturday and Sunday. Head's up, though: I might see a few of you again this Friday.

Island to Island

Remember the movie "Jungle 2 Jungle"? I hated that movie. Freakin Mimisiku.

Looks like I left St. Peter on Sunday just before it turned into an island. It's fitting; leaving my newly waterlogged home of the past four years only to relocate to another island for the next twenty-six months.

Today's post isn't anything too exciting, just pre-departure feelings. I figure, if I've got a blog, might as well use it.

Today might very well be the first day I've actually allowed myself to be excited about all of this. Up to this point, I've been really nervous and scared: the usual feelings anyone embarking on something completely new would feel. Throughout the last month, since I got the invitation, I've reminded myself of all the great things I've experienced that I was scared to do or wanted to back out of: I had a freak out before college started; I wanted to drop out of the wilderness trip before freshman year (it would have been so much easier to just move in with all the other freshmen, I thought. Never have I ever moved into GAC on an actual move-in day.). Now two of us from the wilderness trip are in the Peace Corps; that's a pretty good stat. I also realized part of my apprehension about everything is that, as of right now, I'm completely on my own with this. This will be the first time I've really gone anywhere by myself; I've never even been on a plane alone. All my trips have been with band or Spanish club. This gets to the heart of my newest excitement: meeting the other volunteers!

I looked up pictures of the hotel we'll be staying at while in Apia, the capitol of Samoa. It reminds me a lot of the hotel I stayed at in Paracas when I went to Peru in high school, which gives me mixed feelings. Peru was gorgeous, but I never saw myself living there or loving it. I'm hoping to fall in love with Samoa. A week from right now, it'll be about 12:30 in Samoa, which means I will probably either be sleeping in the hotel after an early morning arrival, or we will have already started with PST (pre-service training). Maybe two weeks from now, I'll already have fallen in love with Samoa.

One thing I haven't read anywhere: MONKEYS. Are there monkeys in Samoa? I wonder what the Peace Corps policy is on pets.

I'm looking forward to being trilingual after all of this.

"Bilingual, trilingual, and American." Let's break that stereotype, shall we?

Also, pictures will come...well, when they happen. We should have internet access in Apia.

Monday, September 27, 2010

One Week in the Minnesota Breeze

Due to many logical requests, I will, indeed, be keeping a blog while in Samoa.

I leave next Monday for a day of staging in Los Angeles, where I will meet other PCTs (Peace Corps Trainees) in the Samoa and Tonga programs. Then we all ship out on October 5th! We're thrown in there with two months of in-country training and we'll be sworn in in December.

My official title is English Literacy and Community Development Volunteer. From what I know now, I'll teach my own class of Year 7s for about an hour a day and I'll co-teach 4-6 and 8 Years for the rest of the day. The school day ends around 1:30pm because of the heat and humidity. That's right, I'm trading snowy Minnesota winters for year-long humid Minnesota summer days. Here's to the sun-bleached blonde afro and bronze farmer tan I'll learn to love. After the school day is over and during school breaks, I'll be working on community development projects; what those will be is determined when I get my placement in December. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for something to do with reading/writing, theater, or music. Speaking of which, my bags are going to be weighed down by the excessive amounts of books I plan on bringing. My flute, which I've had since tenth grade (the one whose foot joint took a tumble down the bleachers during pep band in high school) and has traveled to Texas, Florida, Colorado, South Dakato, Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary, Austria, and Germany will also be accompanying me along the way. I guess when I bought a used saxophone in tenth grade and then traded it in for a brand new flute, I had no idea what a world traveler that instrument would become.

Anyway, here's to the last week!