So I haven’t written one of these blogs yet, and since family and friends keep asking me to start doing a blog I figured I should get on the band wagon. So here is my blog. For those that don’t know I am in Namibia, Africa working with Peace Corps doing HIV/AIDS awareness work. Since arriving in Namibia, I started out living at a training center in the city of Okahandja, which was like club med. It was a very nice place to stay at, hence why we called it club med or Peace Corps Med. They provided us with breakfast, lunch, and dinner….and lets not forget about tea times which were basically another meal. After a week of living at the training center I was introduced to my host family, who I have been living with for the past four weeks and will continue to live with until I move to my permenant site on April 15th.
My host family is a pretty interested group of family members who, when all together, are an awesome family. There is my meme (mother), who is a kindergarten teacher. Her kindergarten class is attached to our house, so every morning I am greeted by a bunch of little ones who cling onto my legs and go for rides as I walk to the bus stop. I have three sisters, Helena (the oldest-18 yrs old), Mary (16 yrs old), and Salmi (15 yrs old). The three girls are a lot to handle sometimes but they are a great help to me when it comes to learning the language. (the language I am learning is Oshidonga) The final family member is Nicky, which if I had to play favorites, he is my favorite. He is the only boy in the family, and he is 13 yrs old. Me and him have been buddies since the beginning, which is good because he always tells me how he likes it when there is another guy in the house. We play a lot of games together and I teach him a lot about american culture because he says that one day he wants to move to america.
So the language I am learning is called Oshidonga. I wish I could say that it’s a lot like English, but unfortuntely for me, that is not the case. I am slowly learning the language which tends to be frustrating since last week I had my first midterm exam. The midterm exam went as expected for me, which for those of you who know how I am when it comes to learning a new language will know that it didn’t go so well. I have four weeks to improve my language skills which hopefully I can do.
As of Thursday, I finally learned where I will be living for the next two years. After I officially swear in to Peace Corps in four weeks, I will be moving up North to OshiKuku. That is about a seven hour drive from where I am currently. From what I hear it is a nice small town, only 20 mins away from the biggest city in the North. I will be working at a primary school, where I will be teaching a life skills class. That is basically all the information I get for now until I swear in. Peace Corps keeps things pretty tight to the belt until your actually at site and at your job. This coming Thursday I will have the chance to meet my supervisor and then on Friday I will be doing a site visit where I will be staying at my site for five days. After that I come back to Okahandja where I finish out my training.
Let me just say that for those of you who are thinking about joining Peace Corps or even for those of you who have joined Peace Corps but have not left yet……TRAINING IS THE HARDEST PART OF YOUR SERVICE!!!!! I was told this about 100 times when I first stepped off the plane in Namibia but I didn’t truly believe it until this past week. This past week has been specially difficult for me and when I finally realized that it will only get better from here I had a “break through.” The up’s and down’s I have already experienced in the past five weeks has been pretty crazy, but I am enjoying every minute of it and can’t wait to actually start my 2 year service. So there is my life summed up in a few short paragraphs so far…..I hope your happy mom because this post is dedicated to you. And on a side not, if you send me a care package please send me some Reese’s.