Thursday, July 3, 2014

Time Flies: Catching up on the Last Few Months

Man oh man, when time starts to fly, it really gets going.

Today is July 3, 2014. I have officially been in Togo for over a year. And no lie, there have been some moments during my service so far where I was not completely sure that I would make it to now. But I have!.

Disclaimer: this is a very, very long post. But there are lots of pictures!

Yay photos!



Books?

As you may well know, I read a lot here in Togo. It is my go to leisure activity (besides solitaire) and is a great pass time in village.

Here are so far a few of the books that I have most enjoyed thus far in Togo!

Fiction:
  • The Night Circus
    • Crazy imaginative book that I downloaded on a whim.
    • I would class it as "Magical Realism"
  • The Fault of Our Stars
    • Everyone should probably read this book. Don't care that it is Young Adult. 
  • Little Bee
    • Heart wrenching story, but a really interesting point of view 
  • The Dovekeepers
    • Powerful story
    • Alice Hoffman is one of my favorite authors
  • The Invention of Wings
    • Probably my current favorite of the fiction books that I have read so far
  • Shantaram 
    • Super, super long, but worth the read
    • Interesting and thought provoking mix of action/adventure, religious debate, and personal growth
  • Poisonwood Bible
    • Classic "Africa" book for a reason

Non-Fiction:

  • We Wish to Inform You That Tomorrow We Will Be Killed With Our Families: Stories From Rwanda
    • Journalist takes on the telling of the Rwandan Genocide
    • Great for those who only have  a basic knowledge of what happened
  • Crossing the Heart of Africa
    • Yay love stories!
  • Wisdom of Whores
    • My go to book when anyone asks me about HIV/AIDS work

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

January, February, and the Future!

Woof. January and February FLEW by. I was in village for the first 3.5 weeks of the year (very proud of myself for staying in village for that long, though I did run out of food by the end).

Be forewarned, this is a bit of a massive post. But there are lots of pictures! And new stories! And just fun times in general!

Also, this post will be in chronological order, i.e. I'll be starting with January until reaching up until now!


The New Normal

In a recent e-mail from my dad (hi dad!) he cautioned me about how I was portraying a somewhat skewed view of my life in Togo. And after having thought about it, I realize he may be right (a bit) but also a bit wrong...

My life here in Togo has become...well...life. I've been in village for almost 6 months and I've established a daily/weekly routine that passes the time. I've never been much of a strange thing in village because there have been several volunteers before me.


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So I originally started this post in mid-January (I think)

It is now early March...

But what I said then stands now. I am indeed living my own life here in my small village in Northern Togo. I realize completely that is possibly a bit impossible for people to believe. "but you live in AFRICA!" I am beyond aware of that fact, trust me. But at the same time, I'm living life. My life. It just happens to be in West Africa.

This all being said, the past month and a half have been quite hectic work-wise. I'll hopefully get a post up in the next few hours talking about January and February, and what I have coming up in the next few months!

-Amelia

Monday, December 9, 2013

Holiday Season!

I can't believe it is already December! As of today (Dec 9th) I have officially been gone from home for 6 months, which is insane.

Not exactly what Xmas will look like in Togo, but close enough

Monday, October 14, 2013

IST

In Service Training (IST) is a training for new volunteers after their first two months of service. The idea is that those first few months are used to integrate ourselves into our villages, i.e. making friends, getting to know the power structure, and things like that. We aren’t really supposed to start working on any big projects (that isn’t to say that we aren’t supposed to do anything at all related to work), but rather focus on getting to know the community we will be living in for the next two years. For many people this includes some work-related activities like attending meeting with womens’/mens’ groups or, in my and other CHAP volunteers cases, helping out at the dispensaire.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Rambles!

Ramblings as promised! They will even be catergorized, otherwise I don’t think this post would be coherent at all. But pretty much this post is the result of me having many, many hours a day where my mind is able to wander and think about pretty much anything and everything under the sun. What results is not-so poetic waxings on some subjects that I thought people may be wondering about how they (the subjects) may be different in Togo. I.e. how I handle certain things here versus in the United States or other parts of Africa(or even au village versus en ville), or how some everyday things/ideas are just plain different here.