Yes, you read that correctly. There is a 10 hour difference from California to Ethiopia. IT t is currently 8:26pm in Ethiopia right now and it is 10:26 am in California. WHAT THE HECK?? Lol talk about jet lag. I will say they have very strong coffee so whenever I begin to crash I can definitely grab a cup. Although, after my first day of trying it and running to the bathroom every ten minutes, I’ve decided to lay off the coffee. Although it tastes pretty good.
Yesterday, we had our interviews for where we would like to live and how we would like to use our expertise. I told them that coming from Cali I am not sure these frail bones can take the cold. I would like to live in a hot and tropical area and I was told I will probably be in a hot and dry area. Well 1 out of 2 will be good enough for me. My official title is Conservation of Natural Resource Management Specialist. There is a good mix of people with business backgrounds (like me) and environmental backgrounds. Today, I started to get nervous as I have very little experience with environmental work, the most I have ever done is pulled weeds and planted a garden, but that’s about it. I spoke with the lady who reassured me that they will teach us from the beginning any details we need to know about the environment and that I may just be teaching children about how to help the environment, working with the community for reforestry, or helping community members market/sell their environmentally friendly products such as honey. I will also be working with women empowerment, hiv/aids awareness, and a secondary project which will probably be youth development. I am excited to move into my community to begin to see what the people want help with and how I can contribute.
The food has been pretty good so far, I really like the seasoning. My stomach has been holding up pretty good. I have to get used to the texture of the bread that is similar to a pancake. But, so far so good.
I got to do a bit of exploring of the capital. I will post pics soon! It was awesome! I was shocked to find out that there are VERY FEW stop lights. Matter of fact I havent seen one but I hear there are some SOMEWHERE. This is why volunteers are not allowed to drive, it would be way too dangerous. There are very few crosswalks as well. I went to the mall and saw some of the shops, purchased a cell phone, and was asked for money. It was just amazing to walk around knowing that I am on a completely different continent.
On Sunday we will be moving into the host family house 🙂 I am excited to give my gift. I bought (with the help of my mom) ring pops and tootsie roll lollipops for the kids and for the adults I got the essence picture book of the obama family, a book of pictures of california, and a book of pictures of prominent american people. Some other volunteers are giving coloring books, tequila shots, calendars, candy, etc
I feel like I have a very strong support system here and back home. I really appreciate all the love and am thankful that people are here for me.
If you have any questions about Peace Corps, my experiences, and what not feel free to comment or send me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org)