Monday, June 30, 2014


Well, the clock is really starting to tick now… 87 days until my COS (Close of Service)!  It’s such a crazy mix of emotions.  90% of me is totally ready to be done.  However that pesky 10% is really anxious about leaving the Philippines.  It’s not that I’m nervous about being back in the U.S., but I’m more nervous about NOT being here anymore.

Peace Corps is some kind of life “warp.”  It’s difficult to explain exactly what I mean – I don’t think someone could understand unless they’ve experienced this themselves – but a lot happens during these two (or in my case, three) years.  First of all, time goes on in a weird way.  Sometimes it’s flying, the days turn into weeks, into months, and it seems like no time at all.  But there are plenty of other times when it seems everything is draggggggggging.  Recently I’ve been experiencing a mix of both.  Now that I’m nearing the end of service, part of me can’t wait, and therefore it’s going slowly.  But in reality, I know deep down that it’s all going quickly.  So it’s sort of like my mind is playing tricks on me. 

I also think one reason it feels like slo-mo right now is that I’m not super busy with a million things.  I recently finished my remedial reading teacher’s manual, which took 30 months to complete.  It’s more than 200 pages, and with the addition of an “alternative” reading program, it’s over 300.  It was definitely the biggest project of my service.  Also, my last freshman orientation is finished, my library project will be done pretty soon, and I’ve just got a few trainings left.  I think it’s that I’m not used to having a lot of things on my plate all at once.  When I arrived at site, almost three years ago, I hit the ground running.  My counterpart is a super high achiever, so we started working on projects and curriculum right away.  I don’t need to talk much about work here, as if you’ve been following this blog the whole time, I talk about it constantly.  In retrospect, this may have been kind of a boring documentation of my service.  Oh well. 

Anyways now that things are wrapping up and no new projects are on the horizon, it’s a very weird feeling.  On the other hand, more exciting news is that yesterday I booked my tickets for my big post-COS travels!  Almost five years ago, when I studied abroad in London (OMGosh I can’t believe it’s been that long!), I joined a group tour around Europe.  It was an AMAZING 19 days.  I met some of the most fun people from around the world, saw beautiful, incredible places, and have so many fond memories that I’ll cherish forever.  When I think back on my semester in London, I always recall those amazing three weeks.  So when it came time to start planning what I was going to do after Peace Corps, as far as travel is concerned, my first thoughts were to ask other PCVs. 

I began asking around, talking with others who are COSing around the same time.  However, it seems that nobody’s plans are going to synch up with mine, either timing-wise or location-wise.  And I don’t want to travel around by myself (boring), so I started researching group tours again.  Aaaaand there are a lot of options, FYI.  There are even tours now that go to Antarctica!  I’ve got zero interest in that, but I did find two tours that are exactly what I want!  So, from September 26-November 3, I’m going to be making my way around Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, and Cambodia on two different tours!  That’s a solid 39 days!  One reason I’m super psyched is that I don’t have to do any planning.  All I need to arrange is my flight to Bangkok.  Whooo!

Then a few days after I finish up my tours, I head on over to Rishikesh, India (!!!), where I’ll be taking a month-long yoga teacher training.  Get my “OM” on.  I feel like it’s going to be really good to sort of clear my head of everything, after Peace Corps and 6 weeks of crazy traveling.  There’s a big meditation aspect of the training, as well as practicing yoga every day, learning how to teach the mechanics, and fully experience the psychological/ physiological benefits of yoga.  I have a good feeling that having the opportunity to peacefully process these three years while living in an ashram for a month is going to be really good for me.  Some major soul power.  I’m really looking forward to it. 

And finally, once I finish that, it’s time to hop on a plane and get my butt back to Massachusetts!  So excited for the 3 F’s: family, friends, and food!


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