Saturday, November 27, 2010

"People are unreasonable, illogical, and self-centered. Love them anyway. If you do good, people may accuse you of selfish motives. Do good anyway. If you are successful, you may win false friends and true enemies. Succeed anyway. The good you do today may be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway. Honesty and transparency make you vulnerable. Be honest and transparent anyway. What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight. Build anyway. People who really want help may attack you if you help them. Help them anyway. Give the world the best you have and you may get hurt. Give the world your best anyway."
- Mother Teresa

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

No Goodbyes

Signed conversation

Rhoda: You are going to America?

Me: Yes in month 1( January) I will go to America,

Rhoda: What color is the plane?

Me: White, why?

Rhoda: So I will see you in the sky.

I watch as they tumble on each other, cartwheels, flips, and high kicks--their laughs, I want to always remember. I enter the compound to 20 little hands, wanting to assist with my things, I want to always remember these hands. I leave my house every morning, and walk toward the school, I am greeted with "good morning teacher" and 97 little smiles, I always want to remember these smiles.

These past few weeks have been full of different events. I had some newbies stay with me for one week and shadow my work, and I even made them teach a bit, and they did great, I am sure they'll make lovely Volunteers. I was also fortunate that their visit coincided with a “field day/ life skills day” that I had planned for the kids, so the newbie’s and another Health Volunteer were extra wranglers for the day.

I wanted to do something nice for my kids before they left; I considered re-painting the dinning hall a source of ire, as of recently; but I decided to go with my strengths, which is not art, but rather playing! The day started with face paint, sack race, three-legged race, and football tournament. In the afternoon we played Frisbee, and had a water balloon toss, which my kids have never seen before! Needless to say it was very entertaining, and the kids had a blast. We finished the evening with arts ( all the kids made pipe cleaner glasses--adorable) and crafts and some HIV/AIDS games.

It was great to see the kids having so much fun, and to see the newbie’s and the Volunteer fall in love with my kids! They really are the cutest kids, ever. I was proud to see everything fall into place, and mostly to see my smiling kids and hearing their squeals of delight. I would update adorable pictures, but my flash drive was destroyed, so no pictures until I return home I suppose.

I guess with 1 week and half left; I should be introspective about my experience but I won’t; not right now. I am doing everything the same as I always do at site, refusing to let the ticking clock distract me. Perhaps I am just in denial that the fact that my whole world for the past two years is coming to a close, or that I fear I will leave the best part of me in this little village, in this little school, in these 97 little people. No, for now I will sit on my stoop let the kids crowd around until dinner, and I will remain seated, without a care, in admiration. Goodbyes; not now.

I will head out at the end of this month to Mombasa to finish up a project; a video about HIV/AIDS counseling and testing. Then I will attend a farewell weekend with fellow Peace Corps Volunteers in my group, and make my way to Nairobi, where I officially “close my service”. After that I’ll make my way to Lake Turkana in the most remote part of the country, Northern Kenya. I will then fly to Ethiopia for a 10-day trip with one of my favorite people in the world! I will spend Christmas with some hostel buddies, and Boxing Day with my Kenyan Mama in Embu. Afterwards I will head out to the massive Mount Kenya; the mountain the country is named after; and the mountain I have stared at for two years. I will ring in the New Year 17,000 ft above sea level, staring out onto the land I have called home for two years. Then I will make my way back to Embu and spend a few quite days with my Kenyan Mama and visit my school-for the last time. I’ll fly to Egypt for a quick trip to the pyramids, and eventually to the U.K. for a week with old friends. Finally, after being away for over two years, I will fly to the United States. Inshalla.

No goodbye for now, let the adventure begin.