Every day I make a little more headway. Here I am with my new rechargeable head lamp, which I’ll be using in Africa for the next two years after the sun sets at 6:30 pm each evening (possibly to even continue writing this blog).
I tried it already to walk in the heavy fog up the steep hill in my neighborhood to the wild spaces under the power lines, while carrying ten pounds of water. I was curious if it would give me a headache (it didn’t.) I’ll eventually need to be able to carry eighty pounds of water (including on my head), so I’ll work up to that.
I’ll be heading to south Florida again shortly for more eldercare responsibilities (Della Ray is still waiting for me for just a short period longer before she goes to her new home with my dear friend), and I’m bringing a few other products with me to test as well. A quick-drying microfiber towel. A bar of shampoo soap that eliminates packaging. A solar charger. That rain poncho.
There’s still a lot to do before I’m ready to go to Uganda, and a few more things I would like to get. In general, I’m not a big product person and my intention is to make due with what’s available and used locally as much as possible — but TSA-approved locks, a good pocketknife, and a wind-up clock seem like good choices to consider adding to my backpack over the next month or two. (I also did order a second pair of glasses, as recommended.)
Today, however, I’ll be giving a heads-up to Peace Corps Uganda by writing and submitting my required new aspiration statement, which they will use to start determining more specifically where I can best be of use. Since the aspiration statement requires me to state what my long-term goals are as well, my husband and I are already thinking about where (and for what) I may apply for the Paul Coverdell Fellowship after service (an option for Returned Peace Corps Volunteers at hundreds of colleges and universities nationwide), how that aligns with his future goals, and what the opportunities of all of our changes might be for us as a couple and a family. But there’s only so far ahead of myself I can get right now.
I think I’ll just start today with another walk up the hill, jugs of water by my side like some apocalyptic survivor of suburbia. Which, perhaps, maybe I am.
My Peace Corps series of posts to date:
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