My last post, was almost nine months overdue. Posted in August of 2014, it was referencing October of 2013, as I put together my belongings once again, and boarded a plane headed back to Zambia for my extension as a Peace Corps Volunteer Leader.
That leaves quite a bit of time in between. Time that I haven’t really talked much about, or written about. In light of that omission, let us begin the process of catching up then.
During those months, I came to Southern Province and was introduced to and began to take the helm of the Peace Corps Resource Center and Transit House. As October and November slipped by, I gained a better understanding of our role and position there, worked to create and improve upon our governmental relationships, and continued site development and volunteer support duties. By the end of November it was time for Thanksgiving, and the big provincial meeting, where I got a chance to meet everyone in the province, and get a better handle on what was happening for the volunteer’s perspective. As December came, I returned to Malawi for a much needed and well earned two week Christmas break. Snorkeling, swimming, relaxing on the beach, and enjoying the beauty of the coast. Malawi was a fantastic reprieve, and a gorgeous destination.
Then it was back to work, returning to Southern Province and preparing for the fly-in and orientation of the new RAP/LIFE intake in February. By April we were finishing up site development, community sensitization, mobilization, and were ready to welcome our soon to be volunteers in their homes. After posting them and seeing them settled into their community entry, it was time to get ready for the mid year provincial meetings, and after that I took another two weeks enjoying the sweet relaxing environs of Zanzibar.
June slipped by in a buzz, and we were starting site development and final site preparation for the new CHIP volunteers who were arriving in country. After their orientation, we focused in on site development, doing what we could to ensure that housing and communities were up to spec by the time the new volunteers would join us in September. There were some difficulties, and some surprises along the way, but we managed to ensure that things were done.
By the end of September, it was time for me to head home, and in late September, I transferred to the Lusaka office and was given a temporary assignment working on record keeping and organization. On Oct. 8th, I officially closed my service with Peace Corps Zambia, and boarded my flight to Copenhagen. There I was met by my brother, and parents. Exhausted, but excited we immediately started to explore the city, and then took a beautiful road trip through Jutland (the Danish Mainland). Exploring the country and experiencing Danish culture was a fantastic bridge between my service and returning to the U.S. By November, still in Denmark, I took the opportunity to hop over to Budapest and visit a good friend studying there. I returned to Denmark in early December, and by the 10th had started the journey back to the U.S.
I’ll start to write more about these in the next few weeks,
Thank you for your patience!