As a 19 year old foreign exchange student in Scotland, I made my first visit to the Lake District of England over a long weekend and immediately fell in love with the terrain and local culture. Through many other visits over the years, I took a few daylong treks and always looked with envy at the people carrying their rucksacks on more serious adventures up into the fells. “Some day…” I hoped, “I want to do that, too!”
Let’s call it a rebranding of this weblog…
Hello, all – I hope you are well! Thanks for visiting again.
I’ve been delinquent in keeping up this blog during the pandemic, although I was fortunate that the virus didn’t keep me from visiting Namibia a few times – it is always nice to see my friends and former colleagues there in my second home. Throughout the period, I’ve mostly kept busy with some local volunteer activities (elections, census, food bank, and mentoring several foreign small businesses through MicroMentor) as well as enjoying some self-improvement (online courses, lectures, webinars, and gardening).
Hi, everyone! Wherever you are in the world, I hope you and yours are doing well, staying safe, and helping those around you. In these sad, discouraging, and frustrating times, I find it helpful to remember people who put others before themselves, and who recognize the advantages they enjoy because of their birth, ancestry, time, and place. To that end, you might appreciate this new documentary describing the history of the Peace Corps, available now for a virtual screening.
Since closing my service and returning to the US in December, I have been searching for my next adventure – an opportunity that would give me the same level of fulfillment that I enjoyed in Arandis.
I considered a return to the corporate world, buying another company, moving into non-profit organization management and even retirement. I only knew for sure that I wanted to be here in San Jose with my love – relocation wasn’t an option. I’m happy to share with you today that I found it…
Heralia and Simeon, good friends from Arandis, were recently married at her village in the north of Namibia. I was fortunate to attend and photograph the event. This is a long post with a lot of photos. I hope they give you a sense of the colorful sights, festive ceremonies, joyous music, smiling faces and delicious food we all enjoyed.
Congratulations, my dear friends. It was a privilege and an honor to share your special day with you.
Since people have been asking… I made the four long, uneventful flights to return safely to California, my “other” home, where I am slowly adjusting to the colder weather. I want to express my appreciation to all of you for following along this journey with me. My posts focused mostly on the recreation and entertainment I enjoyed for the past 2 3/4 years – without a lot said about the work I did. Now that I am a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer (RPCV), free of certain restrictions, I intend to write more about some of the things I experienced and learned in the work I did. I hope you’ll tag along!
Today is my last day at the office where I have worked at the Arandis Town Council for the past 2 1/2 years. It hasn’t always been easy – but it has always been rewarding. Above my desk, every day, I used this poem for inspiration. Attributed to the philosopher Laozi in the 6th Century BC, it encapsulates for me the primary objective of Peace Corps around the world. Continue reading “Goodbye, Arandis! P.S. I love you!”
This past weekend was most special! Bringing together so many of my favorite people in Namibia! Colleagues from work, clients, Namibian friends and fellow PCVs joined me Friday night to celebrate my farewell – an experience I will never forget! Some of them agreed to be caught in these photos and many others graciously made entries in my Memory Book. (I can’t bring myself to go through that one until I’m on the airplane in 10 days’ time.)