In the last month, a lot has happened:
- I’ve started to teach English at the primary school. I had a meeting with the Primary School Directors on the 17th, and was informed I would start teaching 4th, 5th, and 6th grades the following day through the week. I’m now teaching at the school around 5 hours a week. They know I want to teach health, so I’m going to trying implementing a two-weeks-English, one-week-Health thing, and I’m going to do the Health lessons in Khmer AND English. We’ll see how that works out.
- I’m now on the Gender and Development Committee, which is awesome, right up my alley, and comes as no surprise to anybody who knows me in real life.
- I had lice that refused to go away for two weeks. When we first discovered it, we pulled out over 50 adults and 100 babies from my hair. My hair, by the way, is over a foot and a half long. Combing it was the worst. Here are some pictures:
|Look at those little buggers!|
|This is the length of my hair. Too long!|
- Christmas came and went, along with an incredibly crippling bout of homesickness that left me crying for a majority of the 3 days before Christmas. Not only did I get to Skype with my extended family on Christmas morning (Christmas Eve for them) to partake in a tradition that I can’t even remember the beginning of, but my host mom saw how sad I was and threw a Christmas party just for me, complete with special food, and neighbors and students. And beer. It was really special.
- I’ve been sick the past few days. According to my symptoms, the medical officer told me I had a pretty bad bacterial infection. I thought I was better today, but stomach cramps and exhaustion had me home from work in less than half an hour. I’m now surviving on Oral Rehydration Salts. Hopefully I’m okay for a trip I’m supposed to go on tomorrow.
So that’s what I’ve been up to. And now, a reflection on 2013:
2013 started off okay and continued on pretty normally, if a bit hectic between working and school. I almost forgot to write about being selected to do an "Alternative Spring Break" down the shore by MTV. Cool swag, being followed around by cameras, making friends with the most awesome of people (Wolfpack!!), free trip to Six Flags... how could I forget that?! And of course, my trip to LA to see Shaked graduate (my grandlil... I feel so old!), and see my friends and sorority sisters.
Really, the biggest thing that happened this year was receiving my Peace Corps Invitation in March, getting all of my final clearances, and finally boarding the plane to come to Cambodia in July. I was also excited to take my NJ -> Orlando -> Toronto -> NJ trip the weekend before I left for Cambodia, even if it left me a little tired. I finally got to go to Wizarding World of Harry Potter, and I got to add Canada to my list of countries I’ve visited (finally!). And the party I had before leaving showed me how much love was already in my life. I’ve never felt more supported and loved than I have as I’ve started and continued through this Peace Corps journey.
Honestly, when I got my invitation, I had huge doubts about coming here, even crying once I processed that Africa was no longer in the picture. However, Placement knew exactly what they were doing, and my time here so far has proven how very wrong my initial feelings of doubt and sadness were. I love it here. I love my host family. I’m sure I probably would’ve enjoyed other places, but everything about Cambodia is perfect for me. I’ve been sick somewhere around 5 times here, and I still have no complaints.
Sorry if this is a bit all over the place, I’m still recovering from being sick!