OK my avid readers I am about to give you a two month debrief to get you up to date with what I have been doing over here in this great country. Obviously this will not be a day by day commentary but I will try my very best not to leave any exciting events out of this training blog tribute.
I was placed in an extremely small and relaxed village ( malko spakoino cello) in the
But what really got me through this rigorous 10 week training process were my language trainer Tonya and the three other American trainees who were right there by my side everyday. Three to four hours of language training a day plus lesson planning and teaching together and the fact that in our free time, which by the way was very sparse, we all just hung out together at the café, talking or playing speed scrabble. These four people shaped my training and first two months in
I feel like this process allows people to form special bonds between one another in a very short period of time and I am very lucky to have been placed with Corey, Kari and Sarah because each one of them has helped me grow into a more positive and understanding person and volunteer.
Now my village was superb and the very best things about it were the kids. I mean everyday I would walk the half mile to the training center from my house and I would be joined by at least two kids who just wanted to talk or skip or draw on the street, which of course I did and these little interactions that I had with the kids would just brighten up the rest of my day.
I brought two fun things with me from
The hackie-sacks actually helped me meet my best Bulgarian friend so far. I gave him one and then from that day on he always had his hackie-sack with him and we would play in the streets during class break and it was just a wonderful tool for me to meet and communicate with the kids.
OK, now for two stories. The first takes place on the very first night and the second takes place a week ago.
1) It’s the first night in my village and we are taking a tour of all of our host family’s houses. After the last house we all go our separate ways, back to our own homes or at least that was the plan. The sun was going down as I tried to recall what tree I was supposed to take a left at, or was it a right after the donkey. I still can’t remember. Needless to say I am becoming what some expert hunters might call lost. As I try to compose myself and evaluate the situation, the odds of me sleeping outside on the ground were growing considerably high. The sun at this point has completely set and I am, like my Jewish predecessors following the pull of the North Star. It guides me to a dead end with nothing but brush and brier for a manger. And then my avid readers I hear the laughter of a young child behind me. I turn around to face my soon to be rescuer and begin to tell her where I live when I realize I cannot do this, I have been in
2) This story takes place in my training village the week before I swear in. Rain, thunder, lightning. A terrible storm has made its way into my village and awoke me from my slumber with a torrential down pour of rain into my room and onto my bed. The mighty wind is blowing with all of its gusto buckets of rain into my room. I jump from my bed to turn on the lights but alas, the power has been defeated and not a spark would ignite inside the bulbs above my bed. So through lightning illuminated glimpses I venture towards the window and proceed to shut and latch the first of two windows. The second I am sorry to say was old and battered and with the force of the wind and my attempt to close it, it shattered. Shards of glass plummeted to the rain soaked carpet but before making contact with the floor a very large jagged shard of glass struck my right hand severing the tendon of my index finger in half. I can see only a strobe light glimpse of the situation as lightning illuminates my room, blood and water cover my floor and all the random papers on it. Strangely I am not worried or in any pain at all. I calmly call my language trainer and explain the situation to her. I awake my host father who immediately grabs a bottle of alcohol and begins to empty its contents all over my open wound. What a fantastic idea! I then proceed to wait for Peace Corps to relay to me the next plan of action. Needless to say, 3 doctors, 2 cities and 10 stitches later I am presented with a beautiful 1/3 arm length cast. Which I am obliged to model for at least one month around my new village, making all of those cast-less able arm bodies extremely jealous. And that is the story of the curious incident at night time with a window.