Thursday, May 10, 2007

I'm back

So, the internet in T-stan didn't work so well, and thus this blog didn't work so well either. What can you do?

Anyway, it was quite the ride, and I had a good time. The best I can say about PC T-stan is that many of the volunteers are downright awesome. Boy, have I made some good friends. One in particular, Allison. Most of you know about her, but she was a fellow PCV and love struck us. So, when I was booted out of PC for medical reasons, she followed suit and now we find ourselves living together in Albuquerque, NM.

Yep, kicked out cuz of medical reasons. In the beginning I supported their decision, but as time has gone on, I wonder. I think that if they wanted to, they could have supported me medically. Granted, it would have meant more work for them, and therefore I think that's why I was tossed. Not the medical staff...those guys are great. The rest of 'em I could do without. And it ain't like I was on my death bed. Quite the contrary. But, whatever. I digress.

My advice to those looking into PC. RESEARCH YOUR COUNTRY. MORE. MORE. MORE. Then decide what to do. T-stan isn't one of those places that much can get done in a certain amount of time. Have patience. Teach English...if you go to T-stan. Nothing against the health crew that's there, but the program is a little best. The program manager isn't so bad, but they had a person supervising all of us volunteers that was 25 years old and had no health background. Why was she there? Who the hell knows? None of us did.

And as much as they talk about supporting volunteers out in the field. Ha. Forget about it. I could have been gone for days, if not weeks, and nobody would have known any different. In fact, they didn't really know any different. Not that I left for weeks, but there were times that I had to leave site for various reasons, and PC didn't have a clue. They're also not that helpful with housing. Just talk to the volunteers in Mary Velyat. Sheesh.

Okay, I'm done complaining about PC. I'm glad I went. I wish I hadn't been sent home, but I was, so I'm making the best of it. The volunteers are awesome. Totally not the crowd that I thought they would be. I was expecting more hippies, but there were only 1 or 2 (if you count me). There were even people there that voted for W! TWICE! Who woulda thought?

For those that wish to find me, I'm in Albuquerque working at the University. You can e-mail me at

Perhaps I'll be back later with a new twist on an old story. Untill then. good bye.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

I'm really doin' it!!

What in the world was I thinking? I know what I was thinking: I was thinking I needed to do something different. Something significant. Something outside of my comfort zone. Something meaningful. Something BIG.

I think I found it.

I got to D.C. for pre-service staging and all is going well. The training class is absolutely incredible. This is really an amazing group of people that are heading into this vast land with me and I can already feel their support...and I hope they all feel it back.

Examples in the group:
Another person plays the guitar. One person is fluent in Japanese. Many, many, many people are well traveled with great stories and experiences. Most of them are going to teach English, and of the health volunteers, most of them are health education volunteers (I am a community health extension volunteer...I think..)

The initial staging was intense, but very informative and at times even entertaining. I think it would be impossible to get a group like this together and not have a little bit of fun.

By the way, I'm sure this post is going to jump around quite a bit simply as a result of my jumping and anxious mind...

My going away party was a blast. Big thanks to all those that made it, and for those that couldn't you were missed and talked about extnesively (that's what you get...). Also, special shout-outs to my mother for putting it all together; my aunt and uncle for having it at their clubhouse; Michelle and Randy for being great helpers (not to mention great friends); Michelle in particular for the great cake and flags and decorations, etc; Blanca for the tres leches cake (I'll have to see if I can make one of them in T-stan out of Camel milk...mmmmm...); and Sally for great brownies. If I left somebody in particular out, my bad. Believe me, I have praised you many times over, but am spacing your incredible contribution as a result of the whirlwhind that I've already been through and am about to go through.

Tonight I've been on the phone constantly with friends and family offering lots of encouragement and it means so much that so many people care (or at least pretend, and quite frankly, that's good too).

I'm so freakin' excited!!!! Wow.

We head out tomorrow night, then to Ashgabat, then to our initial villages and host families. I won't have access to internet or telephones for about a month is what I'm told, so this will be my last piece of communique for a while. (So cherish it).

Keep me in your thoughts as I press on and wage peace on the world!!!

Till next time-

The happy wanderer

Friday, September 22, 2006

The first post

I just set this thing up, so be patient.

Today is Friday, September 22nd. Three days till I leave Santa Fe, 10 days till I leave the states. I finally have one bag packed and I have no idea how I'm going to fit the rest of it in the other bag, but I'll think of somthing...or pack a little lighter. Probably the latter.

A little background for those just joining us:
I'm heading to Turkmenistan to join the Peace Corps and try to set up small community health centers in rural villages. I really have no specific idea what I'll be doing, so I'll update as I find out. It took me nearly 3 years to maneuver through the PC application process, but I finally made it, and they're finally sending me someplace remote and exotic.

A couple more days of packing up my apartment, selling my car (you wanna buy my car?!), saying goodbye and then I'm off for a few days in DC. I'm pretty excited at this point, but that comes in waves varying from excited to scared to nervous to anxious and then after I run myself through that roller-coaster I generally get sick. But, I'm sure that's normal. If it's not normal, keep it to yourself. I like to think I'm normal.

I'll post another update or two once I get to the staging event in D.C. and then again perhaps from Germany. But, if I don't, I'll catch you all in Turkmenistan.

Wish me luck-