|the three people nearest me ran half marathons.#timetogethealthy|
Just two weeks after getting back to school for Term 3, it was time for Peace Corps Namibia Group 34 to all reconvene for the first time since our December Reconnect. But first, conveniently in the weekend leading up to this Mid-Service Conference there was a marathon in Swakopmund! I went along with what seemed like almost all of the Peace Corps Volunteers from the various groups to cheer on everyone running either the 10k, half, or full marathon! Watching everyone finish their runs almost made me want to participate next year… until I remembered my intense hatred of running even a 5k. We had a nice two days with people from all over PCNam, revisited our favorite stomping grounds for dancing and eating, and said goodbye to many group 30/32 volunteers who are leaving in the coming weeks!
At our Mid-Service we went to a conference center situated in the mountains outside of Windhoek for our first two days. This was one of the most helpful trainings to date, with a lot of sessions, during which we shared our best practices and discussed all our challenges. Aka it was really nice to commiserate with others experiencing similar struggles [classroom management, that’d be you]. We also got a little preview of advice about international jobs we may be interested in pursuing after closing our service. Currently we have only lost 2 of our 38 Volunteers that arrived last August, making us still the biggest group in Namibia right now! After those two days we returned to Windhoek and got medical stuff taken care of to make sure all is still well. And after spending way too much money in Windhoek once again, it was time to get back home where I could live quite sparsely for the next three weeks and hopefully not blow my budget like that ever again.
Anyway, back in Luderitz, at some point recently I realized I’m really at home here. I walk around town and in the location and see people I know walking or driving past me. People stop for me and give me lifts because they recognize me. It took a long time to get here, but feeling like a real part of the community is awesome. I’ve got about 3 ½ - 4 weeks left of teaching, depending on when classes arbitrarily stop for the exam whatwhatwhat, and then the term will wrap up already!
Oh, this past week the GUTS [Girls Utilizing Their Strengths] Girls Group visited the mayor! The girls were very shy once they met Her Worship [as she is called, but they didn’t know this so instead addressed her as Ms. Mayor], but I think they really enjoyed seeing Town Council, listening to the Mayor describe what she does, and introducing themselves to her and explaining what we do in girls group. We facilitators are currently organizing a Gala fundraiser at the beginning of December to raise money for our activities next year :)