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Where in the World is Nick Chantiles?

There are a lot of things I expected out of service, and being out of my village for two months was not one of them. But, if being a PCV teaches you nothing else, it is to expect absolutely nothing and roll with it. I shouldn’t be surprised, as almost every single volunteer I met during training told me “you’re going to be out of your site a ton,” to which I internally scoffed and judged them. 

But the thing is, they were right. I was gone for three weeks in August for IST (a training held after your first three months at site) and intentionally did a short vacation (customary after IST) in order to get back to site quickly but also behold some of the wildlife I naively thought would be everywhere. Despite that, I was in my community  a grand total of one week before zipping off Camp TREE, immediately followed by a ToT (training of trainers) on engaging adult men on HIV education, immediately followed by a beekeeping workshop, immediately followed by a CAT (Combating AIDS together) Crew (our HIV committee) meeting. Life is crazy, I’m tired, and I need to brush up on my Chilunda. 

What have I learned from this? One, I overcommit to any job I work at, and will always be stressed forever. Two, this will probably continue throughout the year, as I’m leaving in two weeks to plan a GLOW (Girls Leading Our World; can you tell Peace Corps likes acronyms?) camp I’m co-leading, and I don’t even want to think about November right now. Three, because of this I have to make my work count while I’m at site, which means (surprise!) overcommitting and cramming as much as possible into the space I have. 

I’m actually really excited to be so busy, and the amazing projects (led largely by amazing counterparts) coming up wouldn’t be possible if I hadn’t been gone, but that does come with a bit of guilt for not being where I feel I need to and should be. I know the stuff out of site is important, but dang I just want to get stuff planted in my permagarden and watch my ducks (oh, right: I redid my garden as a permagarden demo and am buying ducks. A lot has happened and I’ve been bad about updating this blog). 

Anyways, Mom (my sole viewership), I’m sure you can tell by this point that this post is more for me to declutter my mind than it is to update you. I will try to upload pictures (the bane of my blogging existence) soon!

xoxo Gossip Girl 

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Future Line-Up

Highlight Reel + Photo Dumps

I’m going to try and post these at the beginning of every month, but posting pictures is a pain and takes up a ton of data, so it probably won’t happen until I’m in the provincial capital. I also haven’t been able to post during community entry just because of data, so photo dumps might not be every month like I originally planned. Sorry!

Book Club 

I wouldn’t say I’ve read a LOT during community entry, but I’ve definitely gotten back into reading (post-college was a huge slump for me).

Just to kind of share how much time I’m wasting, I’m gonna post about each book I’ve read with a super serious, in-depth review, and then follow up the next day with a quote that stood out to me. Think Oprah’s Book Club, but if no one cared!

TED Thursday’s

The first Thursday of every month I’m going to try and post a video that has:

a) inspired and resonated with me,

b) taught me something new and exciting, and/or

c) has been relevant to me during my time in Zambia.

I think it’ll just be a fun way to share what I’ve learned and touch on stuff that I haven’t written full posts about! It might not be the only time I post media, but I thought it would be good to have a set time.

Featured Blogs

Every now and again, I plan on stealing content from other volunteer’s blogs in the hopes of pilfering their views. In an ideal world this would be once a month, but more than likely will just be when I stumble on something rad.

Misc.

I’m gonna try and post non-category stuff from time to time. I’d wanted to write a post about trying to figure out where I stand with my vegetarianism in Zambia, but I couldn’t really figure out what I wanted to say exactly, so I’m putting it off.

 

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