Sorry it’s been a while since I’ve updated the blog. I’ve been away from site for about a month and just returned for good this past week.
Back in mid-July we had All Volunteer Conference in Windhoek and then my group’s reconnect training followed, which kept us there until Aug 10th.
The All Volunteer Conference was nice. There were over 100 volunteers from Namibia who attended. It was nice to meet volunteers from other training groups and learn about where they are in-country and what they are up to. One of the evenings Wanda Nesbit, the current US Ambassador to Namibia had all of us over for a reception at her home where she served pizza and drinks. What a treat! Very cool to hang out at the home of an ambassador! Quite the set up!
Reconnect was good. It was great to see everyone from my training group and to hang out together. We stayed at a “lodge” (I use the term loosely because the place was pretty run down) up in the mountains and entertained ourselves at night by playing doppelganger (dressing up like someone else in the group) and having an 80’s dance party. I cut all of my hair off before reconnect (it will make bucket bathing easier and hey, it has two years to grow out!) and I tried to shape it in a faux hawk for the 80’s dance party but I didn’t have the right products! Pretty funny stuff.
After returning from reconnect, the two Czech volunteers, two other PC volunteers and I went to hike and camp in Fish River Canyon, the second largest canyon after the Grand Canyon. It’s crazy how similar it looks to AZ in terms of the landscape. It was quite an experience being in the canyon for 4 nights and 5 days of hiking! Climbing boulders, scaling rock walls, walking through lots and lots of sand and crossing the river more times than we could keep track of. Needless to say I’m still recovering.
It was good to be away but it’s also nice to be back at site. I really started to miss my counterparts and the women from the workshop. They didn’t recognize me with my haircut and it took two days to convince many of them that it was really me. There were lots of giggles and hugs once they warmed up to the idea that yes, it really is me and I’m back from being away for a month.
I hope to begin working with one of the social workers from the hospital on a community garden project on the hospital grounds. I gained a lot of good insight and resources at the conference and hopefully we can begin the process of getting some funding to make it happen. Food Security is a real problem throughout Namibia.
I hope that all is well back in the states and with you! Take care and be well.