Heather in Senegal

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Today is Saturday, and on Monday morning I will ride a train to Philadelphia where the Peace Corps staging will take place. I understand staging to be a series of lectures on what to expect and how to behave abroad, followed by a slew of vaccinations. I waver between being excited and nauseous. Mom and I spent most of this past week struggling with the packing list, the shopping list, and various to-do lists. Mom has been amazing. More supportive and encouraging even than I hoped she'd be.
Almost everything that I'm taking to Senegal, including a new violin, has been purchased this week. I know that I can buy many things in Senegal, and whatever clothing I have I'll be able to deal with, but with each item I consider taking, I feel like I'm contemplating marriage. Is it light enough, modest enough, breathable, does it match enough other pieces, and do I like its color? Does wicking matter? (Jennifer Tian, my clothing guidance counselor, I need you now!) I wonder if in a few weeks I'll laugh at how concerned I've been.
Getting to sleep at nights is difficult because of the many tasks yet undone, friends unspoken to, and words I cannot translate into French spinning in my head. But Mom, Jim, and I are still laughing a lot, and I can always read myself to sleep.


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