Friday, August 3, 2012

Beginning of the Adventure

It seems that time has absolutely flown these past few weeks.  After almost a year and a half since I first began my Peace Corps application, I have finally received my assignment!  I am officially going Samoa, leaving on October 5th, 2012 and returning December 15th, 2014.  I will be teaching English to kids somewhere in the range of 5th and 7th graders.  So after many months of not knowing anything, I can't believe I finally know.

There were lots of obstacles on the journey to date.  Many many months ago, I had originally asked for a start date of May 2012.  However, my back had begun to have serious problems and because of that, I had to go see a chiropractor, which unfortunately pushed my start date back to October.  To think back at that now however, I'm really happy that I moved the date.  Not only did it allow me time to heal my back, but in the interim I got to visit my sister in Italy, take a camel ride in Morocco, see all my relatives at a family reunion, and earn extra money at a part-time job.  So it all definitely worked out in the end.  Another obstacle that I ran into was a health scare on my urinalysis.  Results came back that I was positive for ketones and the Peace Corps asked me to run another test.  I happened to look ketones up online and they show up either when you are diabetic or starving.  So the worst thoughts flashed through my mind that I was becoming diabetic!!  I had a long talk with my doctor however and he believes that it was just because I hadn't eaten that morning.  So I ate, took another test, and voila!  No ketones.  So lesson here is: always eat breakfast kids!

The way that I learned my assignment was rather interesting.  I was on vacation in San Francisco with my dad and uncle Scott and we were meeting my uncle Dirk and aunt Lisa for breakfast.  I got a call on my phone and suddenly there was a Peace Corps nurse!  She said something along the lines of, "Because of your assignment in Samoa, I just wanted to double-check that you're okay with the strong possibility of earthquakes" and I was standing there going "wait, WHAT?  Samoa?  Hold on, is this my assignment?"  Apparently they had thought that I'd gotten the assignment announcement already.  Anyways, after I hung up the phone with her, my assignment contact called and told me my assignment.  At this point I was THRILLED to be hearing news about where I'd be going.  Unfortunately we had already made plans to tour around all day so by the time we got back home, I was DYING to know about Samoa and researched for several hours.  I'm beyond thrilled about my placement and can't wait to arrive at my new home for the next 27 months.

2 months and 2 days until I depart!

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