Staging Day 1

Getting There

The most frustrating thing about Day one was my plane flight. I have spent the last month flying all over the country and my flight was never delayed in fact twice we left the gate before our scheduled time, I had no where I had to be so it would not have mattered how long i was delayed then. But 060708 when I had somewhere to be at a set time – what happens? You guessed it! almost a 2 hour delay. At least they let us off the plane after 45 minutes. Philly airport was having weather! I missed lunch. Good thing I got a Dr.Pepper and some chex mix when we deplane.

The Group

The majority of my group are recent graduates either this year or last year. There is one gentleman who is at least 70, and I thought I’d be the oldest! One woman over 50 who’s serving with out spouse and a 50+ who is originally from Ireland. The remaining PCTs are under thirty but a few years out of college. There are two married couples. One twin without his sister. Pretty evenly distributed between male and female.

The main trainer, Sheila, is not a Peace Corps staff member. She is an outside consultant who has run staging events for the Peace Corps for 15 years. Jennifer is the Peace Corps country liason at PC Headquarters. She’s a RPCV – Returned PC Volunteer and Kate is the coordinator for this staging event, also a RPCV.

Sara

Since our flights were messed up I did not meet Sara until registration. On my way to the registration table I saw some PCVs. You know them by the blue folder we all carry. I said hi and someone who looked very familiar she said ” Are you Vicky?”

“Yes” I replied.

“I’m Sara! I recognized you by your shoes!” she exclaimed.

After I turned in all my paperwork I had some time to get to know the other volunteers and some help doing it with an ice breaker. Felt like one of Jeanette’s Volunteer Breakfasts!

The first session was about the Goals of the Peace Corps. We discussed what about the Peace Corps attracted us. We had a chance to write what about the mission was most important to us.

For me, the most important aspect of the Peace Corps mission is making a connection with people of another culture. I want the learning and teaching to flow in both directions.

We also wrote our personal definition of success.

I know that I am a successful volunteer when…

a member of my community asks me for advice.

I am invited to family or community functions.

I see that spark of understanding in one of my students eyes.

I make a friend.

Sheila discussed briefly about our support in Ghana

Then we discussed our anxieties and aspirations. We broke into 5 groups. The assignment was to make a list and draw a picture, Very interesting and fun!

Then Kate talked about administrative stuff.

I would like to thank each and everyone of you who reads this blog for supporting me for the next two and 1/2 years. Your tax dollars are feeding, clothing, housing and entertaining me starting from staging. Thank you. I knew this before but getting my staging allowance yesterday made it real.

Dinner

Ate Thai food with Sara and Stephanie.

Last phone calls

Before sleep I used my cell for the last time and called my mom, Jack and Beth.

Sleep

Reflection

Day one staging certainly made my adventure more real. It is finally sinking in that I am going to Ghana for two years. But I am still calm and not afraid. I just know that this is what I am supposed to do.

-vc

Advertisements

1 Comment

  1. Sara said,

    June 8, 2008 at 9:44 pm

    Yay, Tevas! 🙂

    It’s going to be a whole new experience just reading emails and blogs of all these amorphous faceless people I’ve “known” for a while, but have just met.

    Only a few more hours…


%d bloggers like this: