Thursday, August 18, 2005

Day in the vida...

Wow... I guess it's been a while since I posted... Debrah Jo must be going nuts!! So here's the skinny...

It is Thursday. I am finished with my language class and am supporting the local internet cafe. We had interviews with our program director today and it is, I think, the last one before we know our site assignments on the 29th. To update you on the issue of site assignments, let it be known that it is a subject much talked about... okay, much OBSESSED about in PCT (Peace Corps Trainee) circles. I have researched, guessed, speculated, hoped, prayed, second-guessed and finally exhausted myself of the subject. So, now I am going to wait ten more days until I actually know. At that point, I can begin to research, guess, speculate, hope, pray, second-guess and exhaust myself over something more relevant, like figuring out how to get as much beach time as possible on a PCV (Peace Corps Volunteer) salary.

This week went by pretty quick. Monday was a holiday so we had the day off. Just in case any of you are thinking that this is a cakewalk, I will also add that I had a pretty good bought of homesickness and culture shock. There is a reason that 99% of the population doesn't do this... it's not because we're any better or stronger or smarter than anyone else... the general consensus is that it's because we are slightly more masochistic than your average Joe. Let's just say that I no longer laugh when I hear stories about volunteers breaking down and crying trying to buy a coke. I no longer take for granted all the little things that I did without thinking because it was familiar. Things like walking, talking, bathing, laundry... It's tough to go from 29 years old to 3. But...

That being said... I'm not going home. I have absolutely no intentions of leaving before my service is up. We've lost two girls is the last two weeks and granted we have been extremely jealous that they are currently sleeping in their own beds and eating familiar foods, but there is a whole lot of reality there that isn't much fun either. So... here I am. Wouldn't be anywhere else. Just wanna be able to order a coke without having an emotional breakdown. It's coming.

Bueno... the itinerary for this week is classes in San Jose on Friday. We are going to a VAC (Volunteer Action Committee) dinner on Saturday. Basically it is a welcome party for Tico 13 (my group) and a headed home party for Tico 9. I am excited to meet more volunteers and to have a night off. Sunday I am headed somewhere (I don't know where yet) and I am going to stay with a volunteer at their site until Tuesday. I will be going on my own and I am excited to travel a little less conspicuously than the Gringo Bus has allowed. I am also hoping to have a couple of days to do "something real." I'm not sure exactly what that is yet, but I am hoping to get a lead on it. At some point, I'll realize that it is ALL real, but I'm keeping that reality at arms length.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

We love your determination, sense of humor and compassion! Wish we could be there to share the good and the bad parts of the experience with you...

Anonymous said...

Way to suck it up woman. I'm proud you're not bailing! I assume you knew it would be no cakewalk. And more than likely it will only get easier.
Sending support, hugs and love to you always.
Dee
PS Better to break down over a coke than a beer. You know, the ol "tear in my beer" thing!

Mom said...

This is a tiny little "atta girl"! The homesickness is to be expected... the time to really be concerned would be if you were feeling miserable and unfulfilled and broke down in uncontrollable sobs when ordering a coke in downtown Ft Collins!

Just know we all love you and want you to be happy... so proud of your courage and strength...

Love you lots,
xoxoxo
Mom

Anonymous said...

HEY KELLY SOUNDS LIKE YOU ARE HAVING ALOT OF FUN. I ENJOY READING YOUR UPDATE KEEP US POSTED. YOU ARE MISSED.
HANG IN THERE

Dad & Carol said...

Hi Kelley,
I am not surprised that you are in for the long haul. What you are doing is your calling and we are so very proud of you.
I am sure the home sickness can be overwhelming at times, but I also know that you will get through it because that is just the way you are. We miss you and love you.
Carol & Dad

Anonymous said...

Kelley-
I know what you mean about trying to buy a coke without the breakdown. I've been living in Chile for 2 1/2 years now, and still have days where absolutely nothing goes well and all you want to do is hide under the pillow...Try going to the grocery store just before lunch and buy meat. Here you have to take a number and then hope that the cut you want is available, and that the people in front of you don't have bad breath and they aren't letting their kids run amok with the cart and that the fish section doesn't smell too bad and, and, and, and then wait until you get to the checkout line and discover that you've forgotten to weigh the bananas in the produce section. Not only that you have to deal with the person who pushes their way into line because your cart is full and they've only got half what you have so why should they wait?
Trust me that things will get better. You'll definitely learn patience in your time away from home. The first time you set foot on American soil, you'll have learned to appreciate the laid-back approach to life that you're encountering now. Not everything in life has to be done "right now" and we all survive by taking a deep breath and going on. Soon you'll be able to laugh at all the "little things" and it'll become the norm.
Hugs and a pat on the back!
Tracey