Found Post: Arriving in Country
After arriving in the Philippines, I didn’t spend much time recording my experiences. I was wrapped up in the adventure. Wrapped up in myself. In returning to my blog, I found this post, unfinished, in the queue. It’s complete enough to publish, so I thought I’d share it.
I have been in the Philippines for just over two weeks now though it feels like I have been here much longer. True to its reputation the Peace Corps in the Philippines is something like the “Beach Corps”.This country is home to the best diving and some of the most beautiful beaches in the world…I am not complaining. Let me quickly catch you up on what I have been up to…
It all began Aug. 19th with a one day briefing in Philadelphia, PA for myself along with the 70 other education volunteers. Our other 70 Coastal Resource Management and Child Youth and Family volunteers were briefed in Detroit.
I then volunteered myself to be a group leader, in charge of counting 10 Peace Corps heads throughout our international trip to the Philippines. Due to an illness only 9 of my flock made it, but the last arrived the following day.
Upon arrival we successfully overwhelmed the Manila airport luggage system.
Then we were taken to a really rough and tumble, remote area called a “resort”. There we sat through a week of discussions, captive monkeys, catered food, massages and self assisted crocodile feedings.
After building our anticipation we were finally introduced to our “cluster” groups with whom we are to spend the next 12weeks learning a local language and training for our final positions. Here is the moment I met my group! We were sent to Dumaguete on the island of Negros Oriental. Our final placements will be somewhere in the Visayan region, a Cebuano speaking area.
Having been here for over a year now, it’s so interesting to look back on those first two weeks and rediscover my mood, my excitement and remember the little things that happened in those first days that would have such a large impact on my experience like site placement, language and my cluster. They all seem to have paid off! I’m still here!