"Peace is not something you wish for;

it's something you make, something you do,
something you are, and something you give away."
-Robert Fulghum

01 September 2010


Wow, so much has happened since the last time I posted, I don't even know where to start. I stayed with a Muslim homestay family in Tanga region for 8 weeks where I studied Kiswahili and was also trained in Health issues in Tanzania. This was such a rich cross-cultural experience for all us volunteer trainees (39 in my class) as we learned to eat with our hands, take bucket baths, cook with a charcoal stove, wash clothes by hand, use a choo (hole in the ground for a toilet), and other basic survival skills for Tanzania. After training, we went to Dar es Salaam for a Swearing In Ceremony where we all officially became Peace Corps Volunteers. Then, we went off to our sites - our villages where we will be living for two years.
I live in Lindi region, and I arrived at my village 11 days ago. I should have more consistent access to internet now, and I hope to keep this blog updated. My next blog post will be juicier, I promise, but I figure this is at least a start. Until next time, Peace.

21 June 2010

In Tanzania!!

Hey everyone! I've been in Tanzania since Wednesday night, and I'm having such a blast so far! A group of 40 Health and Environment volunteers are in a hostel for a week, and we've had a few crash course Swahili lessons to prepare us for living with our host families next week. This past weekend we went to Dar es Salaam, bought a few tangas (pieces of beautiful fabric about the size of a towel that the women wear here) and wandered around through the markets. There were so many people in such a small area! The place smelled very intensely, like spices and food, and so much more. I'm signing off for awhile though, because I'll be heading over to my host family and I don't believe they'll have electricity. If they do, I'll try to post, but otherwise, I'll have to let you all know how things go as soon as I get access to the internet. Talk to you soon!!

13 June 2010

Countdown: 6 hours

I leave for Training in 6 hours! I need to get to bed! I'm all packed, and have just a few last minute things to finish up. I've got my luggage down to 84 lbs altogether, though. Wohoo! (Weight limit was 80 lbs checked luggage and 11 lbs carry-on.) Alright... Wish me luck!!

01 June 2010

I'm leaving for the Peace Corps in 10 days! This has been a dream for so long that I'm just incredulous. It's finally happening - I'm really going to Africa!

Some thoughts...

Last Friday, I finished up work at Dana Farber. There are some truly amazing people working there that I'm going to miss. I highly recommend Dana Farber Cancer Institute both as a place of work, and as a place to receive treatment.

As far as packing goes, I've got pretty much everything I need at this point - a frying pan, some deodorant, tevas, and personal property insurance all lined up. I finished moving out of my apartment in Mission Hill the other day, and now there's just more paperwork to do, lots of reading, and some last minute cramming of Swahili words and phrases.

I'm so glad that I was able to make it to Jess's college graduation this past weekend (Congrats, Jess + David!) The ceremony went smoothly, then I spent some time out by Albany, NY where we ate some delicious BBQ and got lots of sun. Then today, I saw my brother Chris and his girlfriend off to the prom. My whole family went and made sure to thoroughly harass him by taking hundreds of pictures.

That about brings me up to now. I've been spending a lot of time trying to get my online life sorted out in preparation for my anticipated lack of internet. (Facebook, I don't trust you.) In all seriousness, though, between Facebook, LinkedIn, Blogger, Gmail, and the picture uploading website of your choice, our online social lives sure get complicated quickly.

Also, I'm simultaneously trying to sort through all this online information, and pack to live in a mud hut without running water or electricity. It's quite bizarre, I have to say.

03 March 2010

Back in Boston

I got back into Boston last night after a magnificent week spent with a host family in a mountain village of Piedras Negras, Honduras. Alongside some unforgettable Sustainable Harvest International staff, we helped build an adobe oven, plant a garden, plant some fruit trees, set up a drip irrigation system, and build a worm compost bin. I have some wonderful stories to share, however they'll have to wait for now... I'm so itchy, that my best bet is just to try to fall asleep right now. What I originally thought was fleas, now appears to be contact dermatitis, and the rash is all over my torso, down my thighs, and all along my arms. Oddly enough, it's behind my ears, too. This is the end of the third day since I noticed the rash. Well, I've taken Benadryl, and put some Hydrocortisone cream on, so I guess I'll just head to sleep and try to heal. =)

22 February 2010

Hola Honduras!

I'm in Panic mode here - In a few hours, I leave for Piedras Negras, Honduras! I'm going with the program Sustainable Harvest International to help plant gardens and build ovens, while staying with a host family in the community. I'm absolutely thrilled to be going on this trip with a group from Hancock UCC, and I've been looking forward to it for weeks!

That said, I have not been packing for weeks. I'm not finished packing yet and I leave in less than 5 hours! Everything is in dry bags and ziploc bags, and, for the most part, organized. The dryer should be finished running by now, so I can pack my clothes. Then I'll just photocopy my passport, blow dry my hair, and hop in bed for a few hours, only to hop out and be on my way! (Thanks, mom, for the ride tomorrow morning at 5:15am!) Wish me luck! Hasta leugo!