Thursday, April 7, 2016

Catch up.

Has it been a hundred years? 

I know, it feels like it has. I've got some soul-searching posts coming up (obviously), but since it's been so long, I thought I'd tell you what's been going on in life since the year started. 

  • Rang in the New Year with friends in the capital of Moldova.

  • Had a food-filled, binge-watching stay-cation during the winter holidays with a friend in my village.
  • Went on vacation to beautiful Romania with yet another friend and had potentially the most relaxing week of my recent memory.

  • Enjoyed a few snow days in the village - because we literally couldn't get out of our house; there was too much!
  • Found out my COS date - my last day as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Moldova is going to be July 7, 2016. Right now that's just three months away (cue panic attack).

  • Helped out with the M30 Project Design and Management Conference, mentoring, answering questions, and occasionally translating (but jeez their language is good!). This was a lot of fun; the COD group gets some really stellar volunteers.
  • Ran a 10K in the underground cellars of the Cricova Winery. I know, right?

  • Made 60+ Valentines to deliver to PCVs - if I could have thought of anything else clever to put on them, I would have made them for even the PCVs I don't know.

  • Helped my village apply for a volunteer to take my place (IN THE VILLAGE BUT NOT IN THEIR HEARTS). 
  • Spent a romantic Valentine's Day eating so much food and watching so much television with a friend in her village.
  • Went on vacation to beautiful Poland, where I met my cousin and his girlfriend and had the best time! We did Krakow, Auschwitz, salt mines, and Warsaw. Spent a few days by myself (and with new friends) after they left, which was also spectacular.

  • LEAP DAY IN MOLDOVA! This wasn't actually very special but I did spend the whole day doing only relaxing things that I wanted to do. 
  • Celebrated International Women's Day (a few times) with my village, including a super fancy banquet at the raion center that we packed 12 women into a van to attend. I'm getting hungry just thinking about all the delicious food we had there.

  • Celebrated a friend's birthday with a weekend filled with fun and games. 
  • Hosted half the raion PCVs at my house for another weekend of fun and games, including a hike to the lake, #buddyyoga, and a kick line or two.

  • Filled up my third journal. 
  • Helped teach a computer usage seminar in the raion center library. This involved planning and teaching about browsing the Internet and setting up an email account, and made us pretty pleased at our Romanian skills. It was oddly a lot of fun to teach middle-aged Moldovan women about how to use the computer.
  • Met a friend's boyfriend and sister when they each came to visit, including a wonderful trip to the Mileștii Mici Winery, which holds the Guinness World Record for the largest wine cellar. (See, don't worry, I'm still "wining.")

  • Attended and gave a presentation at the Regional Experience Exchange for libraries in our part of Moldova, where we learned about projects in other communities and talked together about advice and plans for the future in our libraries. 
  • Did 30 days of yoga in a row (and still holding strong in April so far with the intention of doing 30 more!). 

I never think I'm that busy and then I look back and see all these things I've done in just the first three months of the year! Now I've got three months left to pack in as much (or more!). 

There's a lot in my plans for April (working on my final project, meetings with the health center and villagers to inform them about said project, a Bible Study retreat, another 10K, visitors to my village, our COS conference..) so it doesn't look like things are going to slow down anytime soon. I'll try to take a breath once in a while and pay attention to what's going on around me, and be thankful for the time I've got left. 

Good things about the last couple of days: • delicious weekend of shopping, sangria, and foooood • the weather has been LOVELY • my bike quit working on the way to work but before heading home, a guy outside the Primaria fixed it for me, no questions asked • coffee • new whiteboards to use during English club! • meeting fellow crybabies • productive meetings with the mayor • yummy colorful salads • Gilmore Girls • outdoor yoga • YOU, for reading all of this!

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