So we’re scheduled to swear in as volunteers and begin our 2 months of service on Thursday provided we pass our language exams on Thursday. Then we have a celebration with all of the trainees, staff, and host families we’ve stayed with during training and then we head off to our village. Time has gone very quickly and we’ve been really busy, this might change soon. The training is very structured and you are constantly trying to stick to a regimented schedule in contrast to the pace of life around you. Soon we will be in our village and moving at a slower pace. We’re excited to move on and see what the lifestyle will really be like once we move beyond the realm of training. The first 3 months in our village April 26th-July 26th will be spent doing community entry activities where we get to know our village without jumping in to doing work. Maybe you can imagine what it would be like to get plopped down in a village to bring sustainable development, me I’m still learning. It seems like a chess game thinking ten steps ahead, trying to carefully maintain your reputation and positive relations. I’ll use the word no often, and try to maintain a sense of myself while learning a new language in a new place while somep people look to me to solve all of their problems or just give handouts. My project seems very flexible I can just go out meet people, see what skills and resources are there and try to enhance them. It’s never just as simple as going out and planting trees or building a dam, there is a process which is much more important. I’ve already seen the skeletons of infrastructure brought in through previous development projects slowly decomposing into soil in my village. Enough of that I’ll know more after I’ve gotten used to my village, but the complexities of this job seem overwhelming at times. I can garden and tinker to my hearts content though.

Life in Zambia is good, it’s very safe and peaceful especially in the village, violent crime is very rare. We have cell phone reception in the village and we can give out our numbers if you want it’s free so long as you call us. Our family has our numbers or we could email them to you. The easiest thing would be to send Carly a personal message on her facebook, we can check this in our village on our internet phone. For the past 2 months we’ve been living in a 2 room mudrbrick hut with a grass thatch roof. Our host mom is a widow who speaks little English, but she is very sweet, funny, and accomodating. The food has been good we eat the nshima daily usually with cooked leaves of veggies and beans, fish, or soya chunks. I’m having a hard time writing thinking about how much I’d like to communicate and how much has already happened. I’ve also lost a lot of my voice now that I’m trying to write publically and as a representative of something bigger than myself. I think this will remain brief, but know that all is well our health has been good and no we haven’t really seen any interesting animals, except a cobra with it’s head smashed. Hopefully our photos will load. Please write if you can.

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