Tuesday, May 18, 2010

12 of 26: a year.

One year ago today, I boarded a plane with some kids and one old man and flew to Washington DC. There we got a shuttle bus to a place where we met some other kids, and then we ate sushi and I asked everyone where their financial institutions were, and they laughed, and I played it off as a joke... but everyone still liked me so it was okay.

And I would say, on whole, it’s been a pretty alright year. Made some new friends, learned some new language, ate some banichka, spent most of my time in a cafĂ© in a village somewhere.

But, I’d like to take a chance to think how this year has differed from my expectations;

1. When I was applying, I just assumed I’d be going somewhere in Africa.
-I’m in Bulgaria.

2. Have a sweet new bike, custom built by a special bike shop that Peace Corps Bulgaria might have had.
-I think I imagined this, but somehow I just thought it was too cool to not be true. They did give me a bike helmet though. I don’t get out biking as often as I’d like, I miss that a lot.

3. Find either a deadly spider or poisons snake in my bed before going to sleep.
-This came from a story of a friends’ older brother who was in Peace Corps in Africa. I just assumed it would happen to me too, but as of yet it’s only been the bed bugs.

4. Not having Internet access for weeks at a time.
-This hasn’t come true neither. My village doesn’t have internet access, but I have one of these little mobile internet deals though.

5. Completely lose touch with any new good music.
-Although, there are not ANY good record stores in Bulgaria, I have been introduced to some good new music from my friends here in Peace Corps.

Some things my expectations were spot on.

1. The mayors office where I work, looks exactly how I imagined it somehow.
-Don’t know why this is. Just is.

2. Playing a lot of soccer.
-ohh yes, and sometimes I even kick the ball. . )

3. Read a lot.
-I’ve been reading a lot.

4. Meet some fantastic new people both Bulgarian and American.
-yes, this is true.

q. what kind of shoes does a mouse where
a. squeekers!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Picks, Pics and Picnics

One thing, that is particularly special about the place I live, is that it’s climate is influenced by the Mediterranean sea. It’s not that it is a Mediterranean climate per-se, but some-days it would be easy to think it was. And those beautiful Mediterranean days are how i'm going to describe the previous two weeks.

Since spring sprang in April, the village has been plowing away in the fields and planting the potatoes. The work is fun. It involves spending time out in the beautiful weather with friends, and there usually is a good picnic involved. And that brings me to “the picnic”.

From my time here in the southern Rhodopee mountains, there is something I have learned.
Our friends back in Minnesota really should be having more picnics. It’s not that picnics (or bbq’s, if you wish) are not happening, it is just that they should be happening more often. Instead of going to Taco Jon’s on a beautiful summer day, go to the grocery store to purchase your favorite vafle, kufteta, tomatoes, and cucumbers to be eaten outside in a suitable location. Just sayin’.

Another bit of news is that the new volunteers to Peace Corps Bulgaria are arriving next week. This whole year has been kind of like my Freshman/Sophomore year in Bulgaria. And now begins my Junior/Senior year.

(note: the title for this post was taken from a comment my buddy Ryan made from my previous post. 80% of my humor is me trying to imitate Ryan’s humor, the other 20% is probably something I’ve seen on youtube.)