Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Sorry for the long lapse between posts but its far and between when I get access to internet and because I don't have electricty at post, I don't spend too much on time on my computer! Other than getting ripped with P90X, I have to judiciously use my computer so I can make it to Friday when I go into Kaele for the market!

But, I am in Maroua this week for a conference on Behavior Change, which has so far been really interesting! Plus, we are staying at the nicest hotel in Maroua : ) and eating like queens. We have a pool. I took a shower. Our rooms have air conditioning. Its pretty amazing. And, we are learning a lot about how to actually make a plan to (hopefully) catalyze change.

Life in village has been pretty quiet! I am just easing into work, we aren't actually supposed to do any projects during our first three months of service, so I have been working on networking and integrating into Piwa. I have a friend! We go out and drink bil-bil together sometimes, and she knows so many people in Piwa, I have met a lot more people through her.

I'm also getting my house set up – pots and pans and things like that. I'm painting an accent wall in my living room (and soon I'll have chairs in there as well!), but I'm still waiting for my landlord to finish one room in my house – the floor is sand – but there's no use in getting bent out of shape about it. Things here happen when they happen, definitely patience is a skill that I will leave Cameroon with!

As far as work goes, I went the other week to Tokembere to help my friend run an environmental education day camp, which was a great learning experience for me because I definitely want to have a camp like that in the high school in my village! We are planning on doing the next camp for Earth Day, possibly in Lara ( a village near Piwa) or maybe even in Piwa. But I'll be leading the Flora and Fauna segments. I've never really taught anything so we'll see how that goes....

My spirits are still pretty high; I have hit the wall a few times, but luckily I have a wonderful man (I love you, Edwin!) and family that spend the money to call me and send me letters. I really appreciate that! Sometimes I just feel so overwhelmed by all the pressure exerted on me by being constantly watched by my village that I just want to escape and become inconspicuous again. But, those are normal feelings for all volunteers but I do feel very grateful to have a family that supports me. It amazes me that some of my collegues have loved ones that are consistantly telling them to come home when things get difficult and I am grateful that I have a strong group backing me up and keeping me going! I love you guys!

1 comment:

  1. Ahhh!!!! Cynthia!!!! I was in the process of writing you a really long comment asking you lots of questions and such and I somehow 'went back' and lost

    it all!!

    Ok, fuck it, I'll try to recreate...

    "Go Cynthia!!!! (had something really insightful and inspiring here which I can't seem to remember, but trust me, it was at this point just

    feel enlightened and inspired)

    So, we finally have enough loot to buy tickets. The only thing left to do is determine for how long we will visit. We're thinking 2 weeks mininum.
    I am pretty sure that time is not nearly as important a factor as before. Edwin, Emily and I for the entire summer!!!! Just kidding about at least 2/3

    of that. At any rate, given our situation (which is mostly restricted financially) and your knowledge, what kind of trip would you do? Are there any

    other countries in the region that we should see? Is there some other part of the continent that we shouldn't miss? Also, any little gems such as some place in Europe that you can fly into from cameroon for cheap (so we could also have a mini-European visit)?

    Basically, I want to have as much fun as possible on a limited budget but don't want to have to plan anything myself? Is that ok? Just kidding, just want to get the advice of the local pro.

    Btw, that reminds me, I laughed when you wrote that you couldn't believe that the families of some colleagues suggested they come home when things got tough. Maybe we'll change our tune after the trip and will try to con you into coming back early. BUT until then, we need a local guide for trip, por gratis! So don't go anywhere...just yet."

    Ok, so that was probably the jist of what I had wrote earlier. Minus the comedy and drama of course. So, let us know when you get the chance. Or, as soon as possible could could be good too. I'm just trying to accomodate your new 'lifestyle' where things "happen when they happen."

    Oh yeah, two random questions that I remembered from my lost post. Is inner-region travel really slow when not by plane? And, is it pretty cheap to 'lurk around' the region once we get there? Is lodging, eating, land travel and such cheap?

    And finally, a new one I just thought of, will you be able to travel with us for a bit?

    Ok, I hope that all is well. Stay motivated!!!