This morning we awoke to the sound of a bustling early morning in Tana.  A sound that would be deafening if not for the music like attributes playing the song of Gasy life in the big city.  It was almost tranquil in its confusion of sounds; a reminder of where I was.  This though would be the last time I would hear such a bustle for many months it seemed.  So as I stood at the window, over looking the city, I reveled in its sound.  This was not a feeling of dismay or regret, but a feeling of joy for what was to come.  And with this I grabbed my bags and headed down to the car that would be taking me to the Sudest.  Upon loading up we said our goodbyes to those of us at the hotel not going to the Sudest and Julissa, who though going to the Sudest had to ride with a different group due to the

I’m a Volunteer!!!

            Today was crazy and there was a good portion of it where some of the hotel people could not get there acts together, me included.  But let me start at the beginning where it was all going well.  I’m a Volunteer!!!  Well not yet in the story, we had to be sworn in first; although we did already sign the document yesterday.  So all of the hotel people were up and ready before the car arrived to pick us up and take us to the U.S. Ambassador’s house for the swearing ceremony.  By the way, the U.S. does not have an ambassador in Madagascar as of yet, since the coup, but that did not stop us from celebrating there.  The swearing in celebration was really nice.  It was set up on the lawn with a stage for the honored guest a speeches over looking the audience in front and us sitting off to the side at an angle to see both the stage and audience.  The whole event started out with news reporters

End of a Chapter

            Today ends our time as Trainees in PST.  This morning we all loaded up all of our stuff in the Peace Corps cars and said goodbye to the Training Center for the last time till we return for IST (In Service Training).  For most of us, this was a happy time.  We have all been waiting for training to end so that we could get to our site and start our lives as PCV’s.  After saying our goodbyes and, for most of us, taking our motion sickness pills, we started our long, bumpy, winding ride to Tana.  Once in Tana the stage would be split again into two groups; one staying in the meva and the other at the Zenith hotel a few miles away.  I, along with the rest of the Sudest group and a few others, were at the hotel because we would be leaving the day after swearing in, where most of the people at the meva

Just Some Pics

The guard dogs had puppies

Final LPI

Monday, 8/18/14
            Today we took our final LPI to determine if we had the language level to continue our service.  To pass the LPI we had to receive Intermediate Low, which is just slightly higher than what we needed for our mid PST LPI.  Going into the LPI I was pretty nervous about the test, although I do not know why.  After the LPI I felt fairly good about the test, but we will see soon what I made.

Wednesday, 8/20/14
            After waiting all day we finally found out if we passed the test today.  I failed… It turns out t

Field Trip to Tana

            Today we all loaded up into the PC vans at 7 am and rode into Tana on a field trip to learn about PC Madagascar.  Our first stop on our tour was the U.S. Embassy.  After making it through security, which included a security guard feeling up my leg because the titanium rod in my femur kept setting off the metal detector, we were able to make our way to the main embassy building where we were to have a meeting with the Madagascar Police, Gendarme, and the U.S. head of security in Madagascar.  This, all in all, was just a security meeting in which we were told the protocols if something were to happen and what we should do while traveling. 
            After the meeting at the embassy we left and went to the PC Madagascar Office.  Here we

I Got A New Bike!!!

            I have been waiting for today for a while now, most intently in the past few days, and it ended on a very happy note for me.  This afternoon is when we got to pick out our new bikes that we would have for the next two years.  I say that I have been waiting more intently for the past few days because just a few days ago we saw the bike boxes laying out open on the ground and were informed that we would be able to test ride the bikes this previous weekend.  Unlike with many other things, of which we have grown accustom, we had to wait for a later time than what we were told.  After lunch today though we were able to go out and see all of the brand new bikes and pick the one that we

The Injured Lost

            Today many of the trainees and some of the LCF’s played a soccer game against some of the people in the Mantasoa community.  Little did we know that we would be playing the Mantasoa soccer team.  Not only that, but the field we were playing on was horrible.  Half of the field was grass, but the other half was wet, hard clay that none of us could get grip on.  During the game the majority of our players ended up becoming injured in one way or another.  I myself ended up getting a big chunk taken out of my ankle by a rock.  In the end we lost the game 4-0, but to our credit we did get a few good tries on the goal.  

End of Practicum

            Today is the official end of our Practicum.  During Practicum we were split into two groups so that we taught classes every other day.  For each class we were given different class levels and lessons to teach, which we had to prepare our own lesson plans for.  This lasted for 2 ½ weeks and on the third week we had to prepare a test and give a review for that test.  Today, the final day, we gave corrections to our students for the test and then played games with them till the end of our time.  After that we all gathered and sang our national anthems to each other.  Singing the national anthem

You Can Never Be Ready to Teach Slavery in Africa in Africa

            I think the title says it all.  You can never be ready to teach ‘Slavery in Africa’ in Africa.  But this is what I was assigned to teach for today.  All in all it went fairly well.  We did a history lesson about Madagascar, West Africa, and America.  After that I taught them ‘The Drinking Gourd’ song and we did some language activities. 


            Today started our language immersion at the PCTC.  Since we are back at the PCTC, PC and many of us were worried about our Gasy being affected by us never speaking it since we had each other to talk to.  So to combat this PC put in place rules for language immersion in which we are unable to speak English during meal times.  During these times we all sit at tables with other trainees and language trainers with our dialect.  We were given 10,000 points to start the immersion and if we lose them all we have to pay 500 Ar, but if we get up to 30,000 points then our trainers will do our laundry for us.  The rules are if you are caught speaking English during the specified times you will

Our Return to the PCTC

            Today all of the trainees moved out of our host homes and back to the PCTC.  Everyone was very excited about this, especially me.  Being back at the PCTC allows us to make our own decisions on so many things we were not able to do before.  We can choose if we want to eat or not, when we go to bed, and so many other things that leave us with a filling of freedom that we did not have at our host homes.  We also are able to hangout with everyone when ever we want.  At our host homes we were not able to do this as easily due to the distance between each of our houses and having to be
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