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Monday, September 5, 2011

PACA: Using Participatory Analysis for Community Action


Brushing my teeth in the Ugandan starlight is amazing. I never thought it would be this beautiful at night, and to think, I will be LIVING HERE FOR TWO YEARS?! I feel so lucky to be able to experience such natural beauty in my life. Cue “OH MY GOD, I’M IN AFRICA” moment.

I guess it is finally setting in that I am going to be living here for two years. Even when I was sitting on the banks of Lake Victoria, it didn’t really hit me. The fleeting thought of me living here for two years, for me simply being in Africa at this very second in my life, it was always just that, a fleeting thought. I haven’t had time to really sit and process my choice to come here, what I have left behind, and how much I miss the people back home. I get internet every once in a while and that only helps to prolong this process of realization. I lack to convenience of Facebook (an according to Microsoft Word, Facebook is a proper noun), which would allow me to realize what I am missing in the U.S. I guess that is just another product of the madness of training.

Now, while I am always ranting and raving about training, I have to admit there are some good things to it:
1)FREE SHOTS! (no, not THAT kind of shot, I’m talking about rabies, Hep A, Hep B, etc.)
2)Money ($12 a week to be precise)
3)Food (the SAME food EVERY DAY…I’ve gotten to the point where I barely eat half a plate for lunch)
4)Language (I’m starting to actually start to understand Luganda in practice)
5)Resources (this is actually a serious one, elaboration to follow)

So we got a Peace Corps Uganda Cookbook. Yeah, legit. Now this isn’t your average cookbook (actually, it kind of is). It has all the different recipes that PCVs past (and maybe present) have used at their sites. Now, before you imagine things like rice and beans (that would be a pretty small cookbook) let me tell you there is a dessert section. A DESSERT SECTION! I’m talking cakes, cookies, candy, pies, tarts, cobblers, and puddings! This cookbook is seriously legit. No wonder people actually gain weight in Peace Corps (actually, I am told women gain weight while men lose weight). Things are not looking good on my venture to lose weight here. I am almost hoping the market isn’t too close to my living area so I won’t be tempted to buy ingredients and just eat cake ALL THE TIME.

Now, if only I knew how to do the whole Dutch oven thing (no, not that kind of Dutch oven).

On another note,it is HILARIOUS to see the PCT hook ups going down so far. I’ve only witnessed one, but I know it is assumed (not necessarily by me) that there are two other hook ups going down since we left the orphanage (otherwise known as Banana Village). I guess it was only a matter of time. I have to say I am somewhat jealous because I haven’t been given any form of attention in that manner. It doesn’t seem as though any of my PCT class (CLASS OF 2013 WHAT WHAT) is really interested in me, but I guess I should understand that it is still “somewhat early”.

Oh well, their loss.


1 comment:

  1. It sounds like your experience is unbelieveable! I am so happy and excited for you! You can do and be anything over there, and actualy help! Just constantly think postively! <3
    -Mercedes Beaudoin