Saturday, July 15, 2006

its been awhile

sorry guys, its been awhile. the last update was in early may i think. well now it is mid-july. wow..time is FLYING. ever wish you could take a stick and just stick it in the spokes of life to get things to stand still for just a second to catch up. things seem to be flying around me so fast that i feel i cant quite appreciate what is happening in the moment because something else is right on that moment's heels. anywho, i am getting a bit too deep. that type of philosophy is best for when i am alone at site. so just to fill you peeps in on what has been keeping me so busy.

well i finished up with the "march of the pigs". in the end i was able to get a total of 17 pigs, and even had enough left over money to buy some books on future projects. the people in my pig group rock. they are saving the money they invested and starting to organize another project all on their own, with out financial assistance, to start another livestock breeding program. thought they are arguing over whether they should do milk goats or chickens. i am staying out of it and letting them work it out on their own!!! i did suggest they call the district governments livestock specialist and ask for his advice. we will see.

i on june 2nd i left my village to go be trained on how to help train the new volunteers that are coming. it was fun. i got to see several volunteers from around the country that i have not seen in long time. as well as hang out with the training staff that trained me. it is amazing how much they remember everyone of us. i then went to the lovely city of arusha for a week. the highlight of this was getting to see a couple of friends from back home. the school that i went to in Philadelphia is starting a program in arusha and they were coming to work out a few logistics of the program and invited up for the week. it was so great to see familiar faces. a bit weird at the same time. as anytime when you see old friends that you haven't seen in a while, you have to remember they don't understand all the references that you (or they) might have picked up along the way. in made me start thinking about what its going to be like when i go back to the states. hmmmm...well, time will tell.

i think went on a week long bike tour through trip of a lifetime for sure. biking is great. my friend megan (who used to be a competitive mountain biker)and it went together on a girl power mission. we did one day ride and then two day rest. on the days we rode. we went about 60kilo (about 35-40 miles)on the days we rode. so it wasn't too strenuous for little ol' me. it was beauti-FUL! white sand beaches, palm trees, and crystal clear water. cant complain. oh but the i cant even think about it without salivating!!! i had (in one meal) shark, swordfish, lobster, shrimp, octopus, and squid for less than $7. all from local guys out doing a days work. i do have a change of careers though. i found this guy who lives on the beach and dives for seashells. selling seashell by the seashore is legit and i want to do it!!!!

so then i went back to the training site and spent a week with the new trainees. talk about having the ol ego stoked. nice to have 20 people think that everything you say is so important. it was fun. i got to go visit with my homestay family. when i knocked on the door, my host mom didn't hear, so (as per custom) i entered anyway. when she saw me she dropped what she was holding and started screaming in delight. oh...wait...i'm a little amongst yourselves...ok ok..i'm better. so yeah it was fun. and it was great to meet all the new trainees. being there brought back a lot of memories of training and how much i have been through in the last year.

so then two days back as site. pigs are all still alive. thats good. and i found out that people are starting sell some of the vegetables that i've been selling seeds for. that is great. i even heard a rumor that they are trying to find a truck to start coming to village to pick up vegetables to sell at the big market in mafinga. wow. that was a long term goal i was hoping for, but had not even discussed with the village in any depth. good things...they dont need me. so i left again for my mid service conference in dar es salaam. it was too cold in the village. really cold. really really cold. try living in a breezy concrete block while its 30 degrees outside. not fun.

however, dar es salaam is a pleasant climate this time of year (the only time of year that it is). mid service conference is when we all the people that you trained with (that are still in country) and take stool samples together. as if the peace corps friendship bond wasn't tight enough, group stool samples should pretty much cover any turf that hasn't been covered. there are a few more issues covered at mid service (like a urine test) but mostly thats it. so there is some free time. that is where i am now, using my precious free time to email my loved ones (in other words....send me stuff!!!) i also went out a got my first professional massage. a full body massage...and i mean FULL body. i blushed...several times. i also have been doing a bit of research on how much weight in food that a human stomach can digest in one day before it explodes...i hope to find the answer on monday when we are going to an all you can eat rib restaurant. (i would like to reiterate the difference between urban/rural lifestyles in tanzania).

so that pretty much brings us up to date. i finally closed out two grants so i am working on two more. one of them will be asking for contributions from home, but i dont want to talk about till it is approved. but if you are going out to dinner sometime over the next couple of months, or want to send me a package, take the money and put it aside for me. i need to get 40 people to make a one-time donation of $40 so 40 orphans can go to school every year in my village. when i am approved i will send out a request for funding and directions on how to donate.

what else...thats it. keep writing and sending emails. i love news from home. i hope this finds everyone well and happy. let me know what you are up to. i miss you all very very very much. (i can not believe i have been here over a year already!!!)



Blogger Matt said...

Hello there. It's been awhile, indeed. Looks like you went on to become a hero type person and I went on to become a funny guy type person. Let's do the catch up thing, whatdya say?

2:17 PM  
Blogger Matt said...

So the interesting thing about finding an old friend's blog is that in itself sort of catches you up on what the person is doing. So, nevermind about catching up. I've got bseball to watch!

6:37 PM  
Blogger Matt said...

O.K. I was just kidding. Really I am fascinated by what you're doing there. It's just great that you've chosen to have yours and Brad Pitt's baby there in Namibia. I joke but do you even know about that? Brangelina? I don't know how much E! you're getting to watch. We're inundated in the states. Anyway, you look great AND you're raising pigs. How can you manage both?

Me. I've been raising two cats and a wife. Kim says, "HELLO!". I run a small comedy theatre in Dallas. It's simultaneously fun and stressful and I won't be doing it too much longer. I'm going to grad school soon and try to work my way into T.V. Sitcoms and such. Theatre is dying through little fault of my own.

Anyway, you're cool and I regret that we lost touch. I definitely want to reconnect when you make it home. I'll check your blog and comment when I'm compelled.

6:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow Jungle Jane huh!?That is so great,knew you would do awesome things!I been looking for you on the web for awhile,got lucky today.Really helped on a bad day to see your smiling face.I been saying i was going to stop by your parents house to get info on you,hope they are doing well,may just stop one day.I live down the road in Redlick,married,2 girls and one on the way.Heard about new nephew last month,congrats to everyone.Would love to talk more indepth so i will send a letter soon.You are very inspiring!!Let me know how to help.Take care,Love you girl!!!

2:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Jane,this is Angell again.I was stupid and forgot to give you my email,so here it is, love to hear from you,can't wait to see you when you come home.Take care.Love ya. Angell

2:59 PM  

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