Sunday, October 23, 2005

Blog #1

Hi everybody,

Well, according to the other volunteers the "blog" method of mass communication is the best way to go. So I don't think I'll be sending out the mass emails like I was planning. Instead you guys can simply log on to this site and get an update there.

So, I have twenty minutes to describe the last month. Here I go.

I'm writing this in Maputo, the capital city of Moz, sitting in a church which also serves as an internet cafe. It is my first time in front of a computer since I left the States. For the past month, following a 4 days of travelling, the 41 volunteers and I have been living in a small town about an hour from the capital city. We are in training now, which consists of learning Portugese, cultural norms, safety measures and a sort of crash course on how to teach. Our days are long, but its because we have so much to learn in a short time. Today in fact marks one month since I left home. In some ways it has been the longest month of my life. Getting on a plane in Boston seems like years ago. And yet, I wouldn't trade this past month for anything. I can honestly say its been the most incredible experience of my life so far. And I've literally, only just begun.

We're doing homestays in our town which means I'm living with a family. I have 4 sisters and 4 brothers. Its close quarters inside which means we spend most of our time outside sitting around, doing what people here do most which when translated to English means converse. (conversar). As we sit outside, conversaring, neighbors, friends and family will pop by, hang out a bit and then move on to the next house. Thats how it is here. Time does not exist. You wake up with the rooster in the morning and go to bed when you feel inclined. Nobodys in a rush, its too hot for that.

When I walk down the street, people yell Mulungo at me. (white person in the local dialect.) I yell back Mulandi (black person) at them and everyone starts laughing hysterically. The smile is infectous here and makes you think. These people are poor, literally dirt poor. (some kids eat dirt). Yet they are happy. Very happy.

And so am I. Much love to everybody. Feel free to write me and I'll respond when I can. I don't know when the next blog will be, maybe in like 3-4 weeks.

ate ja.