Jody's Peace Corps Experience

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya

How cool of a name is that for the city I'm living in right now! I made my 7 and a half hour bus ride up here without any problems. The scenery was beautiful as well...a lot of mountains! We stopped along the way for a photo opportunity at the highest point (I forgot the name, but I got a photo that I need to post...I still haven't found a computer that will let me post yet). We got to Bayombong at about 1 p.m. and had lunch at a cafe. Very nice! During our first session yesterday, we found out where our cluster sites will be (cluster site is where our host family lives and there will be 4-5 trainees at each site. My site will be at Vista Hills, Bayambong and there will be 4 of us in all. I was voted at Barangay Capitan (pronounced cap-ee-tan) and I'm not really sure what that exactly means yet.

Today has been more meetings and people talking to us. We broke up into our program areas and had a current volunteer explain the goals and objectives to us. I'm getting more and more excited to actually start at my site. Training goes for about 10 more weeks and we'll be doing a cluster project during that time in our communities. I learned that I am the only volunteer out of the 10 CSE (community services educator) volunteers to be learning the language of Ilokano...everyone else is learning the official language called Tagalog. I'm really interested in what they have planned for me.

We're staying in on a college campus in Bayombong. It's called Nueva Vizcaya State University. Our language and cultural instructors are very patient and willing to answer all of our questions. There are also current PCVs here helping with the training and it's so funny because one is from Worthington! Well, I suppose, I'm heading back up the hill to the university.