Friday, April 28, 2006

Holiday?

So much has happened since my last post, it's hard to know where to begin. After a chaotic few weeks of final exams, the first school term came to an end two weeks ago and since then, my fellow PCVs and I have been on holiday. Unfortunately, "holiday" to us has taken on a different meaning this past week. Since last Wednesday, our group has been held hostage in the mountains outside of Windhoek where we've been participating in our "reconnect"; our first in-service training. Reconnect has given us all a chance to come together after four months, debrief on our sites and service overall and just spend some time relaxing together. Like PST, our daily schedule is a bit grueling, with continuous sessions from 8-5 on everything from racial issues and learner-centered education to corporal punishment and dealing with HIV/AIDS in the schools.

Thankfully, PC decided to hold us hostage in a beautiful hotel like nothing I have seen in Africa. Though the hotel is a good 15 minute drive outside the city (intentionally? perhaps...), a factor that definitely limits the kinds of activities we can partake in during our limited free time, it's hard for us to complain-- for the first time in four months, I'm sleeping without a mosquito net, eating amazing, multi-course meals that never include porridge, and showering with warm water under an actual showerhead. Life is good in the capital city.

It has been nice spending time with people who I haven't seen in months yet who understand everything I've been experiencing at site. Many of us at least began working on the initial stages of a major project or secondary project, and the start of the next trimester will mean the beginning of many exciting ventures in Nam25. I've heard of everything from the implementation of girls' empowerment clubs and youth choirs to running clubs and self-esteem clubs. Being all together again helped jump-start many people's attitudes and focus, something that was really needed I think.

Reconnect officially comes to an end tomorrow and most PCVs are spending the remaining two weeks of holiday traveling. My friends Luke and Mark and I, along with Luke's friend Micah who is coming from America to visit, are going on a road trip that we've been planning for months. We will leave Windhoek Sunday morning and drive to Mark's village outside Keetmanshoop, where we will spend one night before heading to Cape Town, South Africa. There, we will spend six days hopefully doing little more than lying on the beach and drinking tasty South African wine. We will leave South Africa late next week and spending the remaining week driving around Namibia, visiting Luke's village in the north, possibly Etosha National Park, and of course spending some time in Omaruru. I'm looking forward to seeing parts of the country that are so different from where I've been, and to spending some time with some good friends. School begins again on May 15th, which gives us just enough time to have a really fabulous trip.

Like so many things in Namibia, traveling is never what you expect it to be, and this trip will, I'm sure, bring about some unbelievable stories. Until then, you will have to forgive me for this meager attempt at a post after a few weeks of inactivity-- I promise I will do my best to create some great tales over the next two weeks:)

And no, I haven't seen Brangelina yet. Last I heard, they were planning a traditional Himba wedding in the North... ridiculous.

Hope all is well stateside and worldwide:)

1 Comments:

Anonymous Laura Sahoodi said...

"Mama's got the magic of clorox bleach!" Nice reference... I know it's difficult to get "That's not Nancy" in, so I'll accept this one instead :-) Caaaaaitlin! Your journey just blows me away, I love keeping up with all your new experiences. Keep living in the positive missy!

-Sahoodi

6:52 AM  

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