Ok... I'm terrible at this. So much for my New Year's resolution to blog more regularly, eh?
Well, what a CRAZY few months it has been! The last time I blogged was in February? In my blogger defense, I have a few drafts written up that I never completed and posted. Maybe I'll still post them anyway-- you'll just have to jump around with my life!
So where to begin? I'll give you a summary of the major events of the past few months.
March began with La Ruta Maya canoe race, (trust me I will post the blog about that adventure!). It was 170 mile race from Cayo to Belize City--across the country of Belize! It was really, REALLY hard, but such a fun 4 days! I rowed with my two best friends down here, Matt and Dan. We had a few obstacles along the way, (broken oars, broken seats, canoe flipping), but we pulled through in 64th place! (out of 81) And the first Peace Corps team to finish! wohoo!
March ended with a trip to Tobacco Caye with a bunch of volunteers from our group to celebrate our one year mark in country! One year! Madness. We had a nice weekend of kayaking and snorkeling and soaking up the beach life. Nice, nice!
April--what happened in April? April was pretty low key for me, I believe. I did a LOT of work with HIV/AIDS, launching the Sex Chatz men's initiative discussion group with another volunteer in town and Belize Family Life Association (BFLA). I also worked in the high school with the BFLA nurse teaching sex ed-- I became known as the "sex lady".... hmmmm.... But it was such a rewarding working month! On top of those two awesome projects, I coached my Big Falls women's team to the semi-finals of the Delhardt-Courtney Cup.
May was the beginning of tough times down here. Matt had a football marathon on May 1st to raise money for the feeding program in his village. We played out there on "team suk"--the team of gringos. hahaha! It was a fun day, but as we left to head home on the 4pm bus, apparently things went south. The night ended with drunken men arguing over cheating and nonsense, ultimately resulting in a man drinking poison to kill himself. The guy was Matt's friend, and he was pretty shaken up by the whole event. It was all very sad.
Mid-May I took a trip up to Chetamul, Mexico to watch the first movie I've seen in over a year! Crazzzzy! And to eat McDonald's--what else! haha. While up north we also had a Gibnut and Black Orchid game (our Peace Corps football teams)in Yo Creek, Orange Walk. I played three games that day and was dead tired! I played in the women's game and we won our first Black Orchid game ever! Then I played in the men's game and scored a goal and think I truly embarrassed the goalie. I felt kinda bad....but I was kinda a big deal. hahaha. Then we had a final co-ed game and I'm pretty sure my legs didn't work anymore. I was so tired! I think I was pretty much useless that game. But it was a nice northen trip.
As May neared an end I felt myself feeling more and more homesick and down in the dumps. I think it was the one year slump they say is pretty common for PCVs. Things were just very hard. I looked forward to my birthday to kind of knock me out of it. My birthday was awesome! I had a surprise fiesta-themed party with an authentic Mexican pinata! It was a really fun night. Unfortunately, the next day was my actual birthday and I still felt homesick, Matt got physically really sick, and other things were happening all at once.... Things started to go awry.
May ended with a nice little visit from some totally cool people. It was a nice break from the downward slump everyone seemed to be in.
I thought we would be over the hill once June rolled around, but I was oh so wrong. June started with some rough times. A bunch of stuff happened, leading people to be sent home. It was really hard to deal with. Once I got over the initial shock of saying goodbye to some of my closes friends, I found out my main partner organization, BFLA, is going under due to a “financial crisis”. All my HIV/AIDS work was with BFLA…Nurse Cus is awesome and it was a shock to hear they’d be closing in one month. As if that wasn’t enough to put on my plate, only 4 days after hearing about BFLA’s closing, somebody broke into my house and robbed me, taking pretty much everything valuable I own from my house. Luckily, I happened to be at my friend’s having dinner at the time, so I was not in the house when they showed up. They ripped my burglar bars right off my window and came in through the back bedroom. It was a shock to come home to and has been a hard thing to deal with. Now I am in the process of moving and essentially starting over my Peace Corps career. So that’s June in a nutshell. The hardest month I’ve had in Peace Corps, and probably one of the hardest month’s I’ve had in a long, long time. But I have to try to make the most out of things—it can only go up from here. I’m most likely moving to a small Mayan village in western Toledo, which will be a fresh start full of new experiences.
Wow—this turned into a much more downer post than anticipated. Look forward to hearing about the new chapter of my PC life because it’s gonna be great!
In the meantime, I may finish some older drafts and post them to entertain you folks…
Next time den!