October 15. Forty-two years ago today we met in Cambridge Common, at the peace march against the war in Viet Nam. And here we are today so many years later still supporting peace among peoples in this beautiful world.
|We're still marching. Occupy Wall Street|
That desire for peace, and for doing the little bit that we can to make the world a better place, has guided us ever since, and here we are, still working, now in Botswana.
|We had an outing to the dam near Kanye. No swimming,|
however, because of a liver fluke called Bilharzia
It has been an eventful almost two weeks since we have last written. Our Pre-Service Training (PST) is almost at the half-way point, and right now we are on a “shadow”visit to a volunteer, Kelli, who lives in Thamaga, a beautiful village even smaller than Kanye. The idea is to experience life at site in our program of Life Skills. Kelli is an awesome trainer. At 24 years of age, from Tyler in East Texas, she is a natural PCV. Aside from being from a land very similar to Botswana (hot, dry and dusty), she is honest, practical and has a great sense of humor, which are, we are learning, essential qualities to survive the Peace Corps. Leaving our temporary home in Kanye on Monday, with the chickens and roosters all about, felt a little unsettling, even for a brief time, as we have so little that is permanent right now.
So here’s the update on experiences in these past several days all of which are supporting our adjustment to this new country, culture and way of life. You see here a picture of a large village celebration (which we are finding the Batswana love!) at the Kanye Kgotla (chief’s gathering place), complete with amazing dancing.
|We volunteers were given honored seats at|
this cultural event preceding, by a week, the enthronement
of the new Kgosi
Our training class also made an impromptu trip to a dam, and as you can see we were not dressed for the event, although the picnic and short hike were fun anyway. PCV’s are nothing if not “patient and flexible.” And we caught an amazing glimpse of one of the few unusual animals we have seen thus far --- a grasshopper.
|We are looking forward to seeing lions, zebra and giraffe,|
for now, it's donkeys, goats, cows and chickens,
and this six inch long grasshopper
|Dolly's "uplift" hairdo is as uplifting as her spirit. She|
has been a good teacher!
|The neighbors started cooking over open fires at noon|
for this five-year old's birthday. The dancing ended at ten,
late for Kanye
|Birthday parties for five year olds are celebrations|
for everyone in the family, in the neighborhood
|The end of our day, at the home of our host family, the|
Baakanyangs, where we eat dinner every night.
So that is the scoop for now. We will be back soon with pictures of our current site visit after we return to Kanye later this week. As much of an adventure as this continues to be, you are first in our hearts and we love and miss you every day.