Monday, March 7, 2011

wow. tomorrow.

i cannot believe i am headed to staging tomorrow. it seems so unreal still. i thought that at this point i would be terrified or nervous beyond belief, but i feel peaceful. i am excited about getting started with my work in kazakhstan. surprisingly the only thing i am actually nervous about is russian. i'm feeling slightly inept at foreign languages. sign language was just soooo much easier!

i spent last night repacking my bags (thanks to lindsay, andrew, and pops for performing miracles and getting it to all fit) for the third time. my dad and i got it right the first time, but when i went to put the backpack duffle on i couldn't lift it. like at all. & then once i got it on i had to practically bend over and touch my toes to keep from falling over. (it was also 54 pounds. oops). so pops and i went back to the samsonite store, i'm pretty sure they know me by name there now, and i got another rolling duffle. it was heavier than what i wanted, but a sacrifice i was willing to make to roll my junk. this bag weighed 7 pounds more than the other.

i brought it home and repacked with andrew. it was actually pretty painless, and i am glad that i did because my febreeze had exploded in its freezer bag and started to leak. i got it all packed and underweight so i was even able to add my uggs in. yay!this was all one week ago before i went to jersey to greet my new niece. i was so proud of myself (a famous procrastinator) for packing so far in advance.

thennn...i got an email from peace corps with packing suggestions. thanks PC, but a lil late. anywho they said to pack three days worth of stuff in my carry-on, which i did (go me!) and then to fill one bag with the things i will need during training and the other with stuff i won't need until i get to my permanent site. oops again. i totally didn't do that, i just squished wherever things fit. i'm pretty sure even my shoes were separated from their mates. soo my sister and andrew and i spent a loooong time last night unpacking and reorganizing. and then my dad had to come over and get my smaller duffle to fit everything and zip. it was a mess, but i totally think not having to get into the second bag and try to repack again before going to my permanent site will be soooo much easier.

so tips for future pcvs out there struggling to pack, pack one bag for training and the other with things you can live without. so much easier. & i have a packing list that i can email anyone packing in the future if they want it. i was gonna post it, but i don't really have room. =)

tomorrow i will be meeting in georgetown to register and then go through a day of orientation. i will stay the night at the hotel there and then take a bus to dulles airport with my fellow kazakhstan trainees. we will fly out to frankfurt at 5:50ish. then a six or seven hour layover and then flying to almaty. we should get in around 12:30 am. i will then go to sleep and wake-up bright and early for my first day of trainings. whew!

i'm not sure how my internet situation will be, but i'll keep everyone posted & my awesome sister will update periodically for me to let you all know what i'm up to.

&&& i've been meaning to post this forever. i am going to be part of an awesome project. 50 volunteers from 50 different countries will be filling two journals up with snapshots of their service. look at the blog for the details! i will be helping keep track of the second journal and updating the blog to let everyone know where the journal is in the world.

for those of you reading this on Peace Corps Journals, i will be switching over from Applicants to Kazakhstan so find me there!

Sorry for the lengthy post.
27 months til disney world,


  1. Sooooo excited for you, Em:)
    Have a great time exploring the world and representing our country:)

  2. Em,
    Your mom and I are so proud of you and thrilled you are getting to follow your dreams. Its amazing to those of us who have watched you grow up thinking of how your childhood and youth have prepared you for this moment...from youth trips to new and interesting places, going to a college half way across the country and making new friends, pounding the pavement of DC soliciting Greenpeace donations and even travelling to South Africa to experience a whole different world for a month. All of those experiences have helped shape the "you" that prepares to step off into the unknown and begin the next adventure. While you will never fully understand how much we will miss you, we are so happy that you've been given the chance to follow your dreams. Never regret, always look forward with optimism, hope and excitement for each days new opportunities. You are doing what few get to, taking the leap of faith to go off far away and share a piece of you with others while bringing back the love and memories of those you touch.
    Take lots of pictures, keep stepping out of your comfort zone and keep blogging when you can to allow us all to see a glimpse of your life far from us. I love you.