Am I Afraid?

Many people have asked me this question and I always say “No,I am not afraid”. And I wonder why is that? Am I crazy? Shouldn’t I be afraid to go to a whole new culture, meet new people and be “millions of miles, no thousands, thousands of miles from home”. (a nod to “Voyage Home” for those of you who are Trekies). It’s not that I am fearless. I do have fears. I would never be a war photographer. I fear violence and guns. I am honestly afraid to go to into Hartford. I would be afraid to be in a physical fight.

In the Peace Corps I will be safe. One person has been killed in all the years since the Peace Corps began. Heck I might be safer in some ways.  Thousands of people die every year in car crashes in the US.  I will certainly not be on the highway as much. I will be exposed to random danger there as we all are here. Maybe the random dangers will be different but who ever imagined a tiger would escape from a US zoo and kill someone? And I will take precautions there just like I do here. I will learn and be taught how to decrease my chances of random violence or accident in the new environment.

I am looking forward to meeting people who are so very different from me and to discover how we are the same as well. I am an adventurer at heart and am eager to see new sights, taste new foods and do new work.

Last and most important I am not afraid because I believe this is what I am supposed to do.  I think it’s my response to the grace, love and material comfort I have been blessed with since my birth.