Thursday, September 24, 2009

What's that, skipper? News!?

OHMIGOODNEZ! Finally, finally, after what seems like an eternity (but in actuality was only 10 weeks or so), I have received communication from that bureaucratic black hole that is Peace Corps!!

I have been running all over the state for the past couple weeks working and whatnot, and imagine my surprise and ecstasy upon finding an email from Peace Corps that says my account had been updated. I was so focused on making it to October at the very least and it was not even my hope that they would get to my medical stuff until then. And then, glorious words saying that a decision had been made on my medical application. Complete. A wonderful blue checkmark. :D *sigh* I have come to the determination that the secret to happiness in the Peace Corps is to have zero expectations. Then, when they surprise you two weeks earlier with medical clearance then you had calculated, it becomes the most beautiful thing in the world.

I finally feel cool, like I'm part of the group. The group in question: those people who are constantly updating their blogs with news of progress. Now, I have news as well. HA! I am no longer lame and waiting! (well, i'm actually still waiting, but whatev.) One step closer. Once I have my letter in the mail, I will have conclusive proof that I am a viable and acceptable candidate for PC service. That in itself feels like an achievement, even though it was kinda a no-brainer for me. It feels like things are finally moving, and since I'm not in school anymore, I have been anxious to be doing something in my life. I don't just hang out very well. I have to be productive. Unless of course, hanging out is productive in the long term. But maybe that's exactly what this is, waiting for PC. Hmmm... a conundrum.

To anyone out there who is desperately waiting: I wish I could share this happiness with you. I have come to realize part of what makes it so awesome is that 10 week dry spell before hand though.

So, medical clearance, check! Next stop, placement and invite!!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Things to do while waiting:

There's this part in the movie Jarhead where Jake G. is discussing a list of ways to prevent bordem while they are all in the desert waiting for the war to start. Though decidedly less explicit, I've been inadvertantly compiling a similar list in my head every time my thoughts wander to the giant elephant in the room that is my impending medical clearance and placement. Here is what I have so far...

1) Weed garden
2) Harvest garden
3) Can and pickle boxes upon boxes of food
4) Stare at, waiting for new updates
5) Begin a GI Joes wishlist for X-mas
6) Count down days until October, which is one month closer to tenative departure date
7) Build fences, stack wood, clean barns (my parents love this one)
8) Plan trips that will probably never come to fruition but are fun to think about
9) Think about getting a job, but realize that no one will hire you if you are leaving in a few months, so instead, do odd jobs for neighbors and friends. Stash money for future plane tickets.
10) Come up with new creative ways to say "I'm waiting to hear my country assignment"
11) Check e-mail hourly, just in case
12) Fight with Department of Ed over student loans (jerknoses). Attempt to consolidate.
13) Print out loan deferral and passport paperwork. File away for quick recovery and mailing.
14) Take pictures of random things and people to show my future host family (who knows, they may want to see an American gas station... I should be prepared)
15) Go shopping. Stare at cute shoes. Contemplate purchase. Realize you're going to Africa. Go home.

In reality, I have been keeping really busy, which is probably best. Fall is nearly upon us here, and on the farm that means lots of preparation for winter. This is my least favorite time of the year, but it is really nice not having school to worry about for the first time in basically 15 years. What a feeling of freedom! No class, no studying, no homework, no finals, awesome. On the other hand, it means that I have nothing to keep my brain occupied besides facebook and this blog. Maybe when the weather gets crappy and the dairy slows down, I'll have time for pursuits of leisure (HA, yea right...).

Shout out to all my fellow wait-ees. We can do it!!! Patience is merely perseverance with acceptance. :D

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Step 1: Twiddle thumbs

So, this is my practice run. I've been meaning to start this up for a while, knowing that I will want a online journal sorta-thingy while I'm away, I was just afraid mostly of jumping the gun and starting one too soon. Today, I just figured I'd jump in and get it going. I mean, heck, that's how this whole PC thing got started in the first place...

I've always been rather suspicious of blogs. People who spill their innermost emotions and problems out into cyberspace seem to be attention-seekers, in my opinion. Therefore, I feel kind of awkward in this new step. How much do I write? Is anyone going to read it? How detailed should I be? What do I even write about? I'm sure that, as with many things in the coming months, the first time will be the most difficult, and I will soon adapt.

Which leads me to my brief explination/update. PEACE CORPS!!!! Yes, my friends, I have applied to Peace Corps. I didn't want to start too early, but at this point in the application process, I feel that it might be appropriate to practice my internet communication skills. Considering how I have been scouring the web for other PC blogs trying to glean information on the next three years of my life, I figured it's about time. I was nominated on April 29, 2009 for an Applied Agriculture position in Sub-Saharan Africa, leaving sometime in Febuary 2010. PC recieved my medical paperwork on June 19th, I was cleared for dental and legal shortly thereafter, and am now WAITING for medical clearance. There is a vauge little note on my account that says basically, "we'll get to you soon, just wait in line." In the mean time, I am spending my time constructively: fanatically comparing my timeline with other applicants and volunteers, researching African agriculture, drying apples, and trying to keep busy with work around the farm. I am trying to be flexible and patient, I'm just so darn excited!

So for a trial run, I'm going to see how this blogging stuff works. I can only hope there are others out there who are similarly desperate for information about Peace Corps applications. BTW, no matter how many ways you word it, Google will only return the same hits when you search for "waiting Peace Corps invitation." Just sayin'...

...I hope I can get this to post now. Yay for trying new and exciting things!