Saturday, June 22, 2013

After the Sunset

It’s been almost two months since I left Senegal as a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer, and a final wrap-up post of some kind seems long overdue.

For some people, serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer is a childhood dream, infused with the same sort of magic and optimism usually associated with moon-landings and spiritual quests. That was not the case for me; I became a PCV because professionally and personally it seemed like my best option at the time, and because my application went through so quickly I didn't have much time to start job-searching. Nevertheless, it turned out to be a valuable and challenging experience. With the exception of my relatively unhappy Mephaquin stint, throughout my service I felt like I was putting most all of my previous endeavors and experiences to use – backpacking at Camp Unalayee was excellent preparation for rural life; studying French and Art and International Studies and Global Health all turned out to be quite helpful; working with small children was good practice for dealing with irrational drivers and cranky bureaucrats; working at a bookstore was great preparation for being broke. In addition to feeling well-prepared, I was very, very lucky in a number of important ways – with my site, with my health, with my host family, with my PCV neighbors, with a wonderful World Wise Schools correspondence match, and with having supportive friends and family back home. Many thanks all around! 

Now, after what was quite possibly the best vacation ever, I am in Conakry, Guinea, preparing to start a Peace Corps Response position. If you’re interested, my new Guinea-focused blog is called The Kankan Express ("kahn-kahn") and will be doing my best to keep it up-to-date.

Whether you’ve just skimmed a few photos or have been following my adventures with intense scrutiny, thank you for reading, and I hope you found it worthwhile. Merci beaucoup et à la prochaine! 

West African Sunset 

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