Jody's Peace Corps Experience

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Happy 1 Year Anniversary to ME!!!

I woke up on April 1st and asked myself, "Has it really been 12 months since I left Minnesota??? Have I really made it a whole year in this crazy, mixed-up country???" And then it occured to me...YES I HAVE!!!

I've been quite busy working with the new trainees who recently arrived into the country. Seeing them jolts me into realizing how much I've changed in the last 12 months. I'm not suprised to see a huge cockroach sitting on my floor, the ants on my food don't bother me anymore, I'm ok with not having running water for a few days. Having Taco Bell once in the last year is definately a luxury!!!

It's been fun answering the questions, sharing my experiences, and facilitating a few sessions for the "newbies." The Northern Luzon training site is in Baguio City so I've seen a lot of the new volunteers.

One of the other things I've done since I last posted was attend a graduation party with my host family. One of the cousins graduated in dentistry this year and the party was held at our house. My host mom even made me get up and make a congratulations speach as well as sing a song. The whole family got to hear my lovely rendition of "The Itsy Bitsy Spider"'s the only thing I could come up with on such short notice!!!

My host mom suprised me one night by telling me that she was going to record my voice on her cell phone. She has one of those fancy ones that has a voice recorder and the recordings can then be ringtones. Anyway, she had me record, "Hello, you have an incoming phone call. If you wish to accept the call, please press your keypad." Now whenever she gets a phone call, my lovely voice blares from her cellphone!

I was also invited to attend a Philippine National Mountain Biking contest held near Baguio. It was really cool to see the top competetors in the country racing down this steep, rocky path. It was also nice to spend a few hours outside without worrying about pollution or traffic.

Work is also going really well! My project proposal was approved to start holding computer training classes for the staff. I'll be starting next Monday. Our center was also very busy beautifying the building for the coming of the new Secretary of DSWD. I was put to work making banners, cutting grass (out of construction paper), coloring pictures, etc. In the end, our efforts did make the center look great, but the Secretary never showed up. Hopefully in May???

I also uploaded more Here to see photos from Grandma and Francey's visit.