Yup, I'm actually doing it. I'm taking the plunge. Starting August 12th I will be in Senegal working as a Small Enterprise Development Volunteer with the Peace Corps.
Sunday, October 31, 2010
Play-Doh and Candy
Friday morning before the weekend started I had what will hopefully prove to be an amazingly successful Junior Achievement meeting. Kether, who works with a lot English teachers in the area, gave me the contact information for Ndeye, an English teacher she had worked with before who teaches at the Lyvee Technique. Kether gave Ndeye an absolutely glowing recommendation and it was a recommendation she totally deserved. After a rough start to the meeting which involved both of us waiting in the restaurant for a long time because we somehow missed recognizing each other, Ndeye and I had a really good meeting. I'm looking for a Lycee Technique teacher who is interested in creating a Junior Achievement club with me. Unfortunately Ndeye isn't interested in team teaching with me, which was my dream, but she is interested in being a faculty liason, attending the classes, and helping me with the set-up. All good things.
A Junior Achievement book of her own and the students' final projects from last school year helped me seal the deal. Ndeye is going to talk to the principal to make sure he approves her working with a club like this and then we will hopefully start meeting more regularly. Lycee Technique is still not in the full swing of the school year. Only about one-third of the total student population has actually started school and all the students wont have started until after Tabaski, which is November 17th. Ndeye doesn't want to start until after Tabaski which poses a problem since Thanksgiving is the next week, then the All-Volunteer Conference, and then the artisan expo. And then AMERICA. The students also have a three week break for Christmas so I have a bad feeling that the club can't really be up and running until January. Hopefully working with Ndeye, who speaks fantastic English, will work out and JA will be awesome, even if it does start second semester.
After my meeting I met up with almost everyone in the Thies region and headed to Mbour for lunch and a return trip to Warang for more liquor tasting. The lunch I had in Mbour was unbelievable. Even though we all had to order three times before the waitress got it right. I think it was the best meal I've had in Senegal and that it passed the ever talked about test: would this be good in the US? Calamari sauted to perfection in garlic sauce with tomatoes, green peppers, onions, and freaking amazing fries will always be good. The liquor tasting was just as fun the second time around especially since I was with a bunch of people who had never been before. Let's just say that the proprietor remembered us from last time and gave us another great tasting.
Before we knew it we were back in a sept-place, ingredients for Mexican food in hand, and speeding toward Dakar. That is until we hit Rufisque, a always traffic packed suburb of Dakar, where we sat for an hour or so breathing exhaust fumes. By the time we got to Dakar we were too tired to prepare our Mexican feast so I made some great cornbread and we called it a night. Saturday morning we made our Mexican fiesta for breakfast which was delicious and then went to the baseball field where we were thoroughly embarrassed by American school teachers who didn't even have enough people for a full team. An amazing bbq featuring delicious hamburgers saved the day.
This morning everyone at the regional house enjoyed Halloween goodies bags courtesy of my mom before we headed out for brunch and the homeward journey. Ahmed was extremely excited to see me when I walked into the compound today since I had promised him candy and presents for his birthday before I left. Although completely exhausted it was obvious that there would be no sleep for the weary until Ahmed received presents and candy. I taught my entire family how to trick-or-treat. I stood behind the kitchen door and made each of them knock and say "trick-or-treat" in order to receive a delicious mini Twix bar my grandma sent me! I also gave Ahmed some Play-Doh that's been sitting in my room for a while. He absolutely loved it and the whole family really got into it!
I think it was a great weekend had by all. Now all I need is some sleep!
And new pictures are up. Check out the "Softball Season" album.
PCV Alyssa Titche Corps de la Paix B.P. 957 Thiès, Senegal West Africa
* Make sure it's "Par Avion" by Air and that there's a sticker * Please put insurance on packages and even letters because customs officers will rip open both looking for goods and cash * If you are amazing and sending me a package write "Religious Materials" or "Personal Products" on the outside to further deter customs officials, also it is best to buy a flat rate box to reduce the custom fees I have to pay on my end! * Number your letters so I know if I'm missing one as mail will probably take 2-3 weeks to get from you to me
I also have Skype so make me one of your contacts. My Skype name is: alyssatitche
Cell Phone! Call me on Skype! 221-77-330-48-40
Wish List: Goodies, Treats... and Necessities
100 Calorie Packs
Jiff Extra Crunchy Peanut Butter
Mixed CDs (Leigh and Alex sent one and it was AMAZING)