Friday, September 17, 2010


I went a few days early to staging to hang out with my mom, Curtis, Liz, and Moose.

We went to Amish country and ate an Amish feast:

We spent a day in NYC and ate at Kat'z Delicatessen (where When Harry Met Sally was filmed--my fave movie)

We also spent some time doing some taste tasting for Pat's and Geno's cheese steaks (Pat's FTW!)

And of course, I hung out with Moose.

Yesterday marked the first day in the Peace Corps.  I went to staging where we spent the day in a conference room, talking about what is to come. Today we woke up super early to go get our yellow fever shots.  I already got mine when I went to Bolivia, so I just walked over to eat an egg and cheese sandwich in a federal cafeteria (woah).

We leave the hotel today for our flight this evening.  I'm pretty pumped.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

So it's really happening

Here is the start of my packing.  Pretty daunting. My most exciting items are my solar powered/crank powered/battery powered shortwave radio, head lamp, and travel connect 4.

I'm leaving this Saturday for Philly, 1 week before orientation.  My brother lives in Philly, so that's pretty convenient.  I'm kind of freaking out now about leaving. When I first started the application process (which took 1 year!), 2 years didn't seem that long.  Now that I'm packing and saying good-byes, 2 years seems like forever :(

Things I'm looking forward to:
1. Living in Africa!
What! That's kind of crazy, admit it.

2. Working in Girls Education and Empowerment.
If it's anything like GENaustin, I know I'm going to be really happy. There are already a ton of projects already started in the GEE program, so I'm ready to jump on any of them, or start my own.

3. Meeting about a bajillion interesting people.
Judging from the few I've become facebook acquaintances with, it looks like we're coming from all over the place, with all sorts of majors. Some of the best people I've met were while studying abroad.  So here's to the 30 or so people I'll be spending the next 2 years.

4. Speaking French.
So, J'adore french, beaucoup. I've missed being in France and speaking it tout les temps.  Now's my chance to relearn it and speak it toujour. 

5. Being part of a small-ish community.
Well, this is just an assumption at this point.  I won't know exactly where I am going until my 3 months of training is up, but either way, I'm totally pumped to find out where I'm going. 

Things I'm Totes Nervous About:
1. Being bit by a snake.
Ok, so I'm bringing rain boots.  Yes, there is a rainy season in Togo, but I'm bringing them more for the fact that I don't want a snake to bite my ankles.

2. Finding out I'm just crazy.
Why am I leaving my 100% comfortable life for this again? Oh that's right, to challenge myself and to help out in any way possible. But still, I have a really comfortable bed at home, all sorts of yummy foods at my fingertips, a super loving family, and some really great friends. Regardless if I realize I'm crazy or not, I'm gonna be sticking to this.

3. Missing people way too much.
I'm really in love with so many people here in Texas. It's going to be really hard.

Things I'm Pretty Sure I'm Going to Miss:
1. Casey Jones
My best bud for over 5 years and the only person who knows me 110%. It's going to be rough without him.

2. Cheeseburgers/Pizza/Beer
My staple diet here in the USA. I don't think I'll be getting very much of these items the next 2 years.

3. ATX
Austin, Texas! I super love this city! There are so many things to do at any given moment; so many places that serve really good cheeseburgers/pizza/beer.  I'm going to miss going to concerts all the time, hanging out at Crown and Anchor, eating at Austin's Pizza, seeing really pretty views of the capitol, and going to UT (ok, that ended anyways, but still).

4. Swimming
I'm not a runner, at all.  In fact, I'm pretty terrible at it. I'm pretty sure there are not going to be any indoor lap pools where I'm going.  Time for me to learn how to run.

5. Ice Water
That's pretty self-explanatory.

Orientation starts on the 16th in Philly.  At orientation I'm going to get a ton of shots and attend meetings. Then I fly to Lome (capitol of Togo), with a layover in Paris (wahoo, too bad its only for like 5 hours). I'll keep this blogging thing up, hopefully!