It’s Peace Corps Week

Eight years ago I packed up about 50 pounds of my life and got on a plane bound for Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

Sometimes (frequently) it seems like a dream that I lived 2 years of my life in a farming village in the north eastern mountains of Tanzania.  But seeing as how every morning I wake up next to a man who did the same, I have to believe it was real.

I’m sure I could wax poetically for a couple thousand words about everything that being a Peace Corps Volunteer means to me, and how it continues to shape my life everyday, but right now the thing I want to share the most is that when it comes down to it, we’re really all the same.

Seems cliche. But if I’ve learned anything in the past nearly 30 years of life, it’s that often times things are cliche because they are true.

I started macnamania shortly before I left for my great Peace Corps Adventure. And today, in honor of Peace Corps week, I thought I’d share a handful of the blog posts I wrote from the dusty internet cafe we frequented.  And a few of the pictures I recently discovered were still on my forgotten Flickr stream.

First Words From My New Home – “Life without electricity or running water is going well so far, and I’m finding my way through the maze of tiny roads that connects my mountain with the nearby villages and all the other mountains in the area.

girls playing netball

Every Day Life – “When I don’t have classes I can be found in the teachers’ office planning lessons, helping students with physics or math questions, chatting with the other teachers, or studying up on the physics subjects that didn’t find their way into my college career, but somehow show up in the TZ secondary school exams – like what a transistor is used for, semiconductors, and ray diagrams for every type of lens or mirror imaginable. Oh, and thermodynamics – how is it that I never really had to study thermodynamics? Well I am now.

irente viewpoint
Rules of the (Muddy Mountain) Road – “Every vehicle in TZ lacks all working dials that might tell the driver about what the state of his car is. This includes gas gauge, oil, speed, engine lights. Everything. I think it’s mandatory.

Water Water Water

Packing Up and Coming Home – “It is Tanzanian tradition that during a celebration, the person or people being celebrated feed all of their guests a bite of cake, and we did this at my going away party, which was very nice.

If you’ve ever had the desire to turn your life upside down only to discover that when it comes down to it people are all the same, you can start your application here. It continues to be the greatest thing I’ve ever done.

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