Thursday, August 27, 2009

So much to process

We have finished our third day of training here in St.Lucia. The days are long and filled with a lot of information. Yesterday we covered policies, i.e. rules and regulations. Two things they take very seriously are drug use and riding on motorcycles. We also covered health issues. STD's are apparently rampant in the Eastern Caribbean, and according to the Medical Officer, condoms should be kept in the fridge for freshness. Our final session was on Safety & Security, which was actually very helpful. Simone from the PC staff discussed local flirtation practices and how to effectively and polite rebuff unwanted advances. She was very honest and candid about it all and I really appreciated it. The whole staff has been great, as well as the other trainees.
In fact everyone here at the St.Lucian retreat center have been so nice, helpful, and fun. I have really been enjoying the company of all the fellow trainees. It is going to be a minor heart break when 1/2 of them go off to St.Vincents. Even through the heat, and constraints of the center, everyone remains upbeat and pleasant, and we have all been getting along so well.
Today we finally got a much needed break from the center. This place is beautiful, but it is also VERY secluded. After breakfast though, we finally visted the city to do some training at the regional office. We'll also did some exploring, had a drink at a local pub, and finally got to see the sea up close!

St.Lucian sunset

Ladies up in the pub

My scavenger hunt team (-Kelly)

St.Lucian Art

St.Lucian market vendors

48 Years of Peace Corps service in the Eastern Caribbean

Our back yard

The dining hall

View of the bay

Our giant bonzai

Tuesday, August 25, 2009


The view from our room at the training center in St.Lucia. We spent
most of the day traveling and just finished a delicious dinner. I'm
exhausted. Going to shower up and catch up on some sleep.

Stevie Wonder plane

I heard Stevie Wonder in the airport this morning, and of course it
reminded me home. It made me feel all warm and excited. We leave for
the island of St.Lucia this morning and even though they have us at
the airport at an unGodly hour of the morning, I am ecstatic to be
here. I still can't believe my good fortune. Sure I'm nervous and
anxious, but mostly just in awe of this whole experience. I've had a
chance to get to know a little bit more about my fellow trainees and
talking with them about this process has made me feel alot better
about my application experience. I waited over a year and half before
getting my invitation and asignment. These past 18 months have beena
big question mark for me, and that has been really stressful. I felt
like I couldn't move forward with life and didn't know what I was
doing with myself. At times, in fact most of the time, I really
doubted myself. I feared that the reason my application was taking so
long was ME. As it turns out, it was really the Peace Corps, all of
the other trainees seemed to have A very similar experience. Knowing
this gives me an extra boost of confidence. So now I'm just waiting to
finally board this plane and get to the islands!

Sent from my iPhone

Monday, August 17, 2009

Less then one week

I really am down to the final days here in Southern California. I have been waiting for this for so long, and now I can't believe it's finally happening. Getting ready to say goodbye has been very hard for me. I think my nervousness is finally beginning to out weigh my excitement, but that's normal, right? I have to say thank you to my Mom, sisters, and best friend Jaime. They have been so helpful and supportive this past week. All of them helping, in their own way, to make sure that I am prepared and ready to board that plane on Sunday.
I'm looking forward, with mixed emotions, to the final going away party this Saturday. It will be a great to spend time with all the family and my friends right before I go. I am going to miss everyone so much.