Sunday, August 26, 2007

Fin de stage

So all is done and now we have the opportunity to start fresh. Stage is nearing the end and we are all getting ready to head to Lome and by the time you will be reading this post I will be in Lome plugging it on to the computer since for one I will be with a great internet connection. And so it goes…

How do I feel? Well I still think I am here for all the right reasons but I can’t even express the difficulties one must endure from day to day. Emotional difficulties. I am having a hard time being myself when one is in such a controlling environment. Make the most of the situation and yet I am still running and hiding just trying to find quiet time alone. I have little energy to do a lot of things and hope that all of that will return once I get to post. My emotions roll in waves through the day and I have a lot of ups and downs. One moment I’m up and excited and then I crash and just want to sleep. I think it’s dietary changes, environment changes, and the feeling that whatever I do I’m being watched and if you know me…I don’t like to be on display all the time. It’s too much.

And I’ve talked to my boyfriend who is in Mauritania right now..far far from me. That poses another difficulty. After being so close for two years now we are miles apart. I have gotten to talk to him at length for just two times Thanks in part to his parents and their involvement in setting up a conference calling system (3-way). It is too expensive to call Togo to Mauritania and since we don’t have internet yet Skype is out of the question. But the boy is well and we are already planning when we will be able to see each other…in mid December.

Anyone out there got a pen and paper?
Also I have yet to receive a letter in written form from anyone. I can’t stress enough how important letters and photos from home have become. I’ve gotten a couple packages and I appreciate everything inside but that stuff is just novelty, my emotions are crying out for some contact from home…written on paper…I need letters. I have not received a single one. Much more so than packages. And if you do send a package..please….please…send a letter in it. Newspaper clippings from home, photos, anything personal. That is all I need right now and one knows how important it is when they haven’t gotten any. Wil has sent me a letter from Mauritania but who knows if it will ever reach me. Please write snail mail to me since internet connectivity is unreliable and few and far between. It will probably be that way until December where they may run another promotion on Illico (the home internet for Togo). It is too expensive right now for a Peace Corps Volunteers budget. Sorry to stress this even harder but when one is at the end of the emotional string and gets a little excited when a package arrives….she tears past all the goodies from home and doesn’t find but a single letter….anything personal….the tears return. You could never imagine how important letters are until you are worlds away and long for them in times of emotional discourse.

So…words on the Togo side…

We are all ready to get to work and head to our respective villages and therefore I can say that we are all done with structure and group activity. Yeah but that doesn’t mean that when we get to post we will be heading off in pursuit of meeting up again. The closest volunteer to me is about 30k away and we have already planned our first bike ride to meet each other. Ohh and we have also been planning our great big thanksgiving feast so feel free to start sending me Thanksgivin fixins-gravy packets, seasoning packets, stove top, meat and cheese tray, dessert kits, (yellow cake mix with chocolate fudge frosting), coffee cake mixes, snack mix, etc….goldfish crackers, chex mix, poptarts, mmmmm

Ahhh…man I miss Chicago and the great US of A….

And now we are all sworn in and after speaking with WIl and comparing notes I am learning more about myself everyday.

These are some facts that I am ready to post:

I am sooo over group activities, esp when you are all on emotional rollercoasters and you are stuck in Africa and stuck in Togo.

I have never wanted to be alone so much as I do now. I will need to in order to maintain sanity.

I need an injection of happy serum because for some reason most of the time I am easily agitated and irritated and not excited.

Stage sucks but post is better so my emotions are improving. Post will also be even better once Wilcomes for a visit...three months in counting :(

wish me may not see a post for a while since there is no internet cafe in my town and there may not be working internet in the other town I have to bike to.

so snail mail me!

on y va!


Juliana said...

I sent you a letter you poor girl! I hope you get it. I sent it about two weeks ago now. Let me know when it arrives!!!

Jolie said...

Wow. Have you had any positive experiences you'd like to share with the rest of the online community? You sound absolutley miserable - all the time. As a returned PCV - from Togo - I wonder if you thought about what impact your blog might have on applicants, invitees, or new trainees headed to Peace Corps or Togo? I don't advocate sugar-coating your reality, but just think about how your words might impact others....
As for your PST and host family experiences, well, perhaps you could try to see things from someone else's perspective and not take everything so personally. How do you think your host mother would feel if she knew how you really felt about the people who opened their hearts, family homes, lives and culture to you?
A more mature and appreciative outloook on this whole experience might help you get AND GIVE more from this experience.