Peace Corps / Training

Peace Corps Training: Week 0

So, I have spent the past week-ish in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. In that time….so much has happened; however, not a ton of blog-worthy stuff has happened. So first “important” updates, and then some random details of the past week that some people may be interested in.

First and foremost, if you want to be in contact with me, you have to download Whatsapp and message me with your name. Get my Whatsapp number from my family.

This being said, I leave tomorrow morning to meet my host family, and I will be staying with them (all 8 of them in a 6-bedroom house, one ‘toilet’/hole) for the next 3ish months. This is called Pre-Service Training (PST). PST consists of language, culture, language, safety, LANGUAGE, health and language training 6 days per week. In case you didn’t catch it, it’s a lot of Swahili. During this time, I don’t know what the communication situation is going to be. Technology (especially phone plans) are much different here. So, for the near future: NO NEWS IS GOOD NEWS. 🙂

It’s not possible for me to actually give every detail about everything that has happened or that I have learned so I guess here are a couple little fun things.

  1. I have hand washed clothes and it wasn’t so bad.
  2. I pricked my own finger to practice a self-malaria test.
  3. I am constantly in awe of the beautiful colors and patterns that women always wear.
  4. I have learned that Tanzanians spend a while just greeting each other before doing anything. Buying something, coming into a classroom, passing on a street, holding a door…..ALWAYS greeting first. I like it.
  5. My birthday was awesome.
  6. I miss pizza. I’ve been eating a lot of peas.
  7. I have eaten SO MUCH RICE. SO. MUCH. It has been a part of every meal except breakfast since I got here. Good thing I like rice?
  8. I have had coffee with breakfast. I have had chai with, well, Chai (mid morning meal tea time kind of) every day. I think I have a good tea ratio of sugar/milk/water down for someone who never drank tea/coffee consistently in the U.S.
  9. I have learned about the many uses of Kanga. They can be (casual only) skirts, water filters, head coverings, towels, and if you wear 2 or 3, you can get from your host fam bedroom to the bathroom without showing any knees or shoulders.
  10. This group of trainees is incredible and the most impressive group of people I have ever been a part of. It is super common to hear things like “What? Yeah, I speak Japanese.” Or, “When I was living in Morocco a few years ago…” or “When I was teaching in Spain..” or “When I was working on that water project in Haiti…” Even beyond that, this is just a good group of human beings that have been accepting and welcoming of everyone from the first meeting in D.C.
  11. I’ve gotten..5? 6? vaccines?
  12. Apparently, it took me traveling halfway around the world to try Indian food, to try papaya (it was awful), and to watch an episode of Game of Thrones.

Here are some pictures (I know, there aren’t many):

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Swahili

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The lecture room/classroom with a projector set up for Game of Thrones

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