18 August 2008

The past 3 weeks

Hello all. I'm finally back at it in Mindo…

Do you ever experience those days when you're just down and wondering how you're going to get up and when you think you've reached the bottom of the pit there out of nowhere something comes and picks you up and rejuvenates you. I think I imagined Peace Corps as a summit of some sorts that I would conquer and after sit back and enjoy the smooth downhill descend, but 15 months in and one year to go I've come to realize there is no summit. Peace Corps to me has been more like a roller coaster with many ups and downs.

The past three weeks have been busy and very up.

It started off with a Girls Leadership conference which was one of the most amazing things I've been apart during my time here. Within Peace Corps Ecuador we have different committees for volunteers so last winter I applied to be apart of GAD (gender and development) and was invited to be on the committee. Our main goal is to give scholarships to girls that have the motivation and grades to study but lack the financial support. And once a year we have a 4 day conference for all 70 scholarship recipients. It was so refreshing to spend time and get to know such strong young women that at the ages of 14 and 15 are fighting against all odds to continue their education and better themselves. It was an honor to meet such intelligent and determined individuals that reminded me of the limitless possibilities we have within our reach if we truly believe in ourselves.

And the next day I was greeted with some good home lovin' with the arrival of Melanie a friend from Western who is also serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Panama and a few days later by another dear friend Jenni. We had a blast traveling around Ecuador… experiencing all the fun of dancing in Quito, the joys of public transportation, and the painful ice cold nights in the sierra. Reaching the middle of my service home has been something I've been aching for and having their sweet spirits and familiar faces here with me for a short time was just the pump up I needed.

Hope this finds you all well.
Much love to you all always.


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