Friday, June 29, 2007


Hello and welcome to my blog! This is my attempt at mass communication to update interested parties about my service as a Peace Corps volunteer. I figured this would be much easier than the mass emails with addresses lost along the way that served me during my study abroad Semester at Sea.

After spending 3 years pushing buttons and demonstrating my quick typing skills and overall efficiency at mindless tasks in a job in the financial services industry, I am deciding to take a little adventure that will allow me to explore what else the world has to offer. Although my interest in the PC began back in college, the application process for me started in Fall 2005 and I accepted my invitation to serve in Bolivia on June 15, 2007. Here's the lowdown:

Who: Me and a group of cool people I have yet to meet
What: Business Education/Consulting Volunteer in the Microenterprise Development Program
When: Orientation ~ Aug 19-20, 2007 (please fwd all birthday presents to Bolivia), Training ~ Aug 21 - Nov 9 in Cochabamba, BO , Service (aka work) ~ Nov 9 2007 to Nov 13 2009
Where: somewhere in Bolivia
Why: Because life is too short to not take risks...and, as per the Peace Corps mission statement 1) helping the people of interested countries in meeting their need for trained men and women; 2) helping promote a better understanding of Americans on the part of the peoples served; 3) helping promote a better understanding of other peoples on the part of Americans
How: to be discovered and discussed :)

Less than a month and a half till I leave and I have lots of loose ends to tie up, namely moving and finishing up my work here in CT, saying my see-you-laters, and attempting to prepare myself for whatever lies ahead. On top of the annoying errands and administrative things I need to do, I will also be attempting to dust off the little Spanish I have stored up somewhere in my little brain since I'll be using it for the next 2+ years. They're going to be giving us intensive Spanish (and some Quechua) instruction during our 3 months of training but it doesn't hurt to get a little head start. I'm sure there will be many fluent (or close to fluent) trainees (that's what we're called until we officially swear in as "volunteers" at the end of our training) so I'd better get on that being the overachiever that I am! I have checked out the book (and cassette tapes - but who in the world has a cassette player these days? except maybe my mom...) "Spanish for Gringos" - that means foreigners which apparently I will be labeled as very soon. Funny how i stumbled across a few of my favorite Spanish words from when I took it in high school (Senora Host! I need to find a function for a tilde) and my one lame semester at college (darn it, should have stuck with it...what use is there for Chinese other than not making a fool of myself in front of the relatives?)...these words include: melocoton (peach), alfombra (rug), mantequilla (butter) and rascacielos (skyscraper). I'm not sure why I am such a fan of them, I think I just like how they sound, but hopefully they will come in useful at some point (like maybe when I talk about how I used to live near Nueva York and there were muchos rascacielos aqui and hopefully i'll be eating my fair share of mantequilla on toast while sitting on my alfombra and maybe there will be melocotons in Bolivia, if not...I'll just play the if (blank) were una fruta, he/she would be a melocoton). Also, I am wondering what I will do with my name while I'm Spanish class my Spanish name was "Chabela" (thanks for helping me pick that one Carrie!) Typically (and logically) people translate their names - Mike = Miguel, Anna = Ana, Albert = Alberto...but since they don't really have a J sound in Spanish and my name would sound like "hoy" which isn't very instead I chose Chabela which is the Spanish translation for Betty. Betty = Joy? I think I'll use the explanation of the literal translation as "Alegria" which is joy or happiness...ah, I love the puns. I am so punny.

With that said, it's time for bed! (I also rhyme) More updates to follow as departure nears :-D