I am officially an RPCV
Trip Start Mar 21, 2006
55Trip End Oct 05, 2008
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As the title of this update reads.... I am officially an RPCV- Returned Peace Corps Volunteer. Well, I guess I have not returned to the US yet but as of today I am finished with my Peace Corps Service! The array of mixed emotions I am feeling at this time is difficult to describe.
The beginning of last week I was facilitating a Project Design and Management Conference for Peace Corps. This was my 6th facilitation of this event and was a wonderful way to go out on a high note with work and as always a reminder how much I enjoy facilitating. Twenty-Five PCVs from the new batch and their Filipino counterparts attended the conference where they learned the process of working together to write a proper project proposal. There are small grants available to PCV's for project support and in order to access these grants they have to attend this conference. PDM is a great event to do with HS Student Governments, College Student Govt. and any board or group of people working on projects or wanting to develop visions and action plans. I am looking forward to bringing this conference back to the US and introducing it there.
My last few days here in Manila have been filled with finishing PC paper work and most importantly spending time with PCV friends! I have met so many amazing people over these two years and feel so blessed to have shared such an incredible experience with them. Needless to say it has been an emotionally draining few days saying bye to PCV friends and having late nights/early mornings. I know I will see my friends again but it is indeed the end of an era and the abrupt ending of the closeness in proximity will take some adjusting too.
While I have been very busy the last few weeks amongst it all I have managed to make some decision about life after PC and committed myself to travel dates by purchasing plane tickets. I have been debating going to law school or an MPA/MPP program... it is something I have been thinking about a lot the last year and I finally made a decision. A few weeks ago I was sitting at the farm in my favorite reading spot under the Nipa Hut I camp out in, looking out at the beauty all around finishing Barrack Obama's book " The Audacity of Hope" (highly suggested read). I finished the last chapter.... closed it..... Looked up at the incredible view of pine trees and said out loud "I am going to Law School!!!!" So that is the plan, I am looking at Environmental Law Specific programs, I probably won't start earlier then next fall but I am really happy to know this is my next step. There is a lot of work to do before I get there but I am up for the challenge.
As for my post PC travel plans here is my basic itinerary:
- At Farm all of June
- Fly to Hanoi, Vietnam July3-11th to meet up with Sarah Trent (Redlands Friend) who will be there for work.
- Back to Philippines for a Month spent both in Sagada and at the Farm.
- Leave Philippines around Aug. 10th..... Yet to purchase this ticket having a hard time stomaching this purchase....
- Then head to Thailand meet up with Kelly (PCV friend) and travel through Lao and Cambodia August- early September.
- Fly to NEPAL SEPTEMBER 16TH-OCTOBER 18TH (Can you tell I am excited about this trip ;-))
- Back to Bangkok and fly home from there on OCTOBER 20TH.... So I will be home (Seattle Area) on October 20th!!
Needless to say after an emotional week here in Manila I am looking forward to some down time at the farm and serious R and R in one of my favorite places in the world!
I hope you are all doing well and stay tuned for my travel tales beyond the Philippines.
Love to all,