Monday, July 30, 2007


Uploading pictures today turned out pretty hectic. Apparently, the flash drive I have been using has about 1000 viruses and the cyber computer keeps rejecting it. I finally called a guy over to fix the situation. He did, by confiscating my little storage device. Most embarrassing still are the loud "warning" sirens whenever computer guy tries to open any of my pictures. Sigh. This is the only one I can get on.

Try again next week.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Working on it!

I know, I know! I promised I would update this blog and now I can. I am in the rain forest and there is internet. Look forward to pics!


Friday, October 06, 2006

Manjakandriana and training

Those were long, long days. Natasha used to say "you have to laugh to keep from crying". 30 of us started this adventure, huddled together like domesticated sheep during training: long walks back and forth from the training site to our host families, enduring the 500 Hitleresq salutes of "manaona vahza"everyday, getting used to endless plates of rice, freezing weather, countless hours of culture, language and seminars, isolation, depression, fleas, schisto, shots, bucket baths by candles or flashlight, pit latrines, giant insects and other fun things I am not going to mention. 26 left and 1 year 6 months to go.

First steps

Arrival in Antananarivo: Baggage check,
and away we go. Yes I know the story line is a little dry but right now I thought I would put up more pics and adjust for content later. Cheers.

and on and on

These are the collection of photos taken in Philly. That was the last time we slept on beds like these, and walked through streets like these. Who wants to sponsor an IKEA here?

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

En Route: From NYC to South Africa

5pmish June 13th JFK. How much luggage can 30 people carry?! Granted the task of trying to pack for 2 years is a little challenging. From the minute we got to the Delta terminal, ignoring our porters under breath cursing, I could already tell it would be a long day. Unfortunately for them, the Delta Air crew, there would be 2 Peace Corps groups flying out that day. The South Africa-Lesotho-group was about an hour behind us, and maybe they wouldn’t be over their weight restrictions. Yikes!
Twenty something hours in the air and brief layover in Dakar, the crew was as anxious to get rid of us as we were to get off that plane.
5pmish June 14th Johannesburg. I have never been greeted with wine and cheese in a lobby before, until just then. Apparently Peace Corps does good business; the night before arriving in Madagascar we were well fed, well liquored and well cared for. Cheers!

Start: Philly

Started in Philly, 30 strong, idealistic, and ambitious and naïve. AmQ gave us THE tour, and her family fed us the finest cheese steaks, beers and freshly cut fruits in their remodeled Quaker house (that was a bonus). A famous author used to live there, I forget his name but he had great taste.

Two days, 13 hours of pre-training, Sheila Lee, great food, running around, last minute financial and academic details, un-packing over packed bags, freaking out and re-packing the same bags, finally…..on to JFK.

Friday, September 01, 2006


I know. I've taken some time off. Not intentionally and no worries I found an internet cafe close by. I will be back online with pleanty of stories and pictures to more than make up for the absence. See you in 2 weeks!!

A bien tot.

Friday, June 09, 2006

and on to staging

whoop whoop, the packing is finally done. errhheem thought i still have to weigh the luggage and make sure i didn't exceed my 80 pound limit. 80 pounds for 2 years? surely, and the way i have issues with restricted packing!?!

otherwise i am ready to be on my way. my slight anxiety has not mushroomed into full blown apprehension (a previous assignment to chad had resulted in a hysterical crying fit to yellow). lame i know. but this new assignment is quite the opposite. i feel relaxed. i suppose knowing i am only 2 hours from "home" and the extended family i have missed so much for close to 16 years now has something to do with it.

by friday next week i will be cheering world cup on from antananarivo, as i change the world. africa mbele!

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

so long dc

06/06/06 and I am back from the District. It was good to say a proper farewell. I have missed walking around Adams Morgan, lunching in hide-away cafes, trips to Bread and Chocolate in Eastern Market and a public metro system. Most of all, I missed everyone I left there.

My Thursday through Monday visit was refreshingly hectic. I must have scheduled, rescheduled and overscheduled myself; all while fingers crossed and praying I got to say a final so long to all my loved ones. Amazingly most of the days went off without a hitch. Not counting monday afternoon's great car adventure and Em's sudden case of lethargy, after finding out we were heading to salsa dancing.

Sunday's main event, Carla and Matt's wedding, was a great day out on the rolling hills of Fredrick MD. Really it seemed more like a reunion as family and friends shuffled in from at least 6 states, Jamaica, and the Ukraine. All the friends expected were there apart from poor Mona who was delayed 5 hours in the Bahamas. Luckily she got to the wedding right before the marital limo pulled away. Later we all had great laughs, the remaining singles, at Sakura's house over Amstel light and cashew nuts. Things never change and yet they change so much.

Congrats to the happy couple.

Until next year...............