Thursday, October 13, 2005

In Apia, Samoa

Hey everyone. Just letting you know I am here and fine. There are 14 of us. And I think 20+ volunteers currently in country.

Training in LA was okay. We just basically went over the handbook and discussed what made PCV's (Peace Corps Volunteers) sucessful. It was nice to get people to get to know each other. We did fun exercises with colored pens. Check out Mari's website (http://marisamoa.blogspot.com) for pictures of the group and when we arrived in Samoa at 2:45 am. I will upload a few pictures later, but I forgot my camera card this trip.

We are living in Apia, Samoa (the capitol city of Samoa) right now. Everyone keeps referring to this first part of training as the honeymoon because most things are still done for us.

We will be intensly training for 10 weeks. They say if you last 10 weeks, you will make it in the PC. I am currently a PCT (Peace Corps trainee). I become a PCV at the swearing in on December 14th. On the 21st we leave for a week to live with families in a small town outside of the capital. We do that on and off for awhile. 1 week with the family, one week back, one week with the family, one week back, 3 weeks with the family, 2 days back, and then the swearing in, and then off to post.

I won't find out where I am going until probably the 29th of this month. I could go to one of 2 islands. 3 of the 14 volunteers are going to Savai'i. And the rest stay on 'Upolu.

We have learned a little language. But not the intensive part yet. I can say thank you. Fa'afatai. And your welcome: Fa'afatai fo'i. And I can even pronounce them correctly. :) Plus a few of the other basics.

While I am in the capital city, we have fairly regular access to the internet, otherwise, it won't be until I get back into the capital.

Let me say that the people here are super friendly and nowhere NEAR as large as everyone in the states assumes. I would say they are average. Smaller than a lot of Americans.

The climate is nice... for me who is always cold. In fact last night I needed a long sleeve shirt. Everyone else thought I was nuts. It's humid, but not too much yet. This is the beginning of the humid season. The country is beautiful, I promise to post pictures as soon as I get the chance. I will probably NOT be calling anyone because it is expensive for Samoa to call the states, but actually fairly cheap for the US to call here. And my email time is limited because of the slow computers, so I won't be responding very often to emails. Though once I am actually in service I will have more free time.

Until the next time...

4 Comments:

At 4:30 AM, Anonymous Liz said...

I'm so glad to hear you made it and are enjoying yourself so far! Hope all goes well in the next several months as you adjust... Just remember to not have any expectations (or to keep them as few and as low as possible) and things will be (relatively) smoother and better as you adjust to living cross-culturally... and that way if you had really low expectations of what it may be like and it turns out better than you thought (as it usually does), you have something to be really happy about... at least that's what works for me :-) ... Take care and don't worry - I'm really bad at emailing people (as you know), so you don't have to email me cause I may not email you :-)... but I will read and comment on this blog :-)

 
At 1:50 PM, Anonymous Daniel J. Wilson said...

Sorry I missed your going away party. I look forward to pictures!

Blog spam sucks.

 
At 5:53 PM, Anonymous sspev said...

Julya,
I just talked to your Dad, and wished him a Happy 60th! He indicated that he doesn't like 60, 'cause it feels old, but I advised him that he'd better get used to it!
Glad that you've arrived safely, and judging from your postings, your travels were uneventful, so far. Seems that our Elzbth has given you some good advice, too. Know that you'll be in our prayers -- love and grace to you.

 
At 8:41 AM, Anonymous Mom said...

It was great talking to you on Monday. Yes you are right, I love yellowtail. It is my favorite sushi or sashimi. We have been reading all the blogs, and following all of your adventures. Everyone here keeps asking us how you are doing. I saw Pastor Paul on the Island this weekend and he wishes you well. They are staying on Vashon with Mike while Sharon is going through Kemo at Swedish. It is closer here than Olympia. Our prayers are with you as you continue your adventures. Love you

 

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