April 21, 2012
So the trainees made their first trip to Tana this week, which was pretty exciting, even though we didn’t see a whole lot of it. We went to a government appointed children’s home, funded by international donations. It is really nice there; I was really impressed with the work they do. The courts send youth there for foster care or because they have committed a crime. The center feeds, houses, and educates them, and when they turn 18 (if they stay that long), the center sets them up with a potential job.
Then we went to the Tana Meva, which is housing for volunteers while they are in Tana. There are ones in Fianarantsoa and Diego as well. Hung out with two Michigan alumni, one who graduated with me (woot!) and has been here since July in health, and one who is in her third year of service. Geeked out a bunch about U of M stuff, including my first mention of “the Michigan difference” for the first time in forever haha. Also, one told me they like my ring from San Fran on Pinterest, so well done Erica and Helina, we have awesome taste and are starting a trend. Additional small world info: the CED trainer for this week, Al, grew up in Buffalo, NY. However, he lived for about a year in Ann Arbor while his dad finished up school, the summer I was born! They lived in Northwood, and my parents lived in a condo near North Campus. We may have known each other. Parents? The name Fertig ring a bell?
So then we went to see the Peace Corps office, which was really nice. They have a ton of really cool Peace Corps posters that I sooo want to find. Favorite—the corner office can wait, some corners of the world can’t. We had an IT session there with David McAfee, who is a returned PCV who now lives here in Tana. He quoted Gabe (another RPCV from Mada) almost to the letter about winning the Peace Corps lottery with Madagascar. It is a wonderful place J
Upon our return to the PCTC, a few of us decided to play some poker. You would be proud Tina, I won VS 6 other people. A whole 3 dollars haha. But to us, that is currently a lot of money haha. Then, on Friday, we had a language session on invitations, so we talked a lot about weddings. RACHEL YOU GET MARRIED IN ONE MONTH!!!! AHHHHHH that’s so exciting. During the weeks of Rachel, Megan, and Tina’s weddings, I will be watching a whooole lot of girly wedding movies, mostly courtesy of my friend Christina here.
Last night, our language trainers decided to set up karaoke for us, which was pretty hilarious. The backgrounds of the songs were the absolute worst synths ever, and Gabe, you were right, the Malagasy love karaoke. No shame and they have pretty awesome voices. They also really like slow songs, which is hilarious. Not too many Americans participated, but it was fun nonetheless. Today, we are continuing our April birthday celebrations with a BBQ for Anne and our PCV trainer Tara, which should be fun. Then tomorrow I am going to visit my family in town again. We give a presentation on Thursday for our families about potential income generating activities, so I will be giving them the presents my parents sent from home. Excited!
Less than two weeks left!