Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Philly, New York, Paris, Ouagadougou

I'm here! After a quick 4 hour bus ride to JFK, a 7.5 hour flight to Paris, a few hour layover, and a 5 hour flight to Ouagadougou, I'm in the hotel in Ouaga. The past couple of days have certainly been a whirlwind to say the least. There are over 50 volunteers that arrived in Philadelphia for staging on Monday, and 20 or so that left a little earlier that we'll get to meet soon. Staging in Philly was basically 5 hours of logistical information, a little cultural training, yellow fever shots (I already had mine, woo!) and then free time to tie up loose ends, buy the last minute things we forgot, and soak up a little bit of America for the last time. I spent my time abusing the a/c and internet at our hotel and then was lucky enough to meet Carolyn for lunch right before our bus left for NYC (hi Carolyn!). Going through the airport was a little bit of a nightmare with so many people, but that was to be expected. The flights weren't too bad and after a nice nap on the floor of the Paris airport I'm feeling pretty good. Our country director Shannon, along with a few other volunteers and staff, met us in the airport and drove us to our hotel. I was pleasantly surprised to find that we not only have a/c, but free wi-fi, so I thought I'd take the time to post the boring details of my travels so far. I will be here in Ouagadougou until Friday, when we will take a trip to our main training site in Ouahigouya. Tomorrow we will be meeting with our Assistant Peace Corps Directors (the people charge of our specific programs - one for Girls Education, one for Secondary Education etc.), getting all sorts of malaria meds, being tested in French (yikes), and all that good stuff. I guess thats about all I've got for now - I'm lucky the good old think pad battery has lasted me this long. I promise to post again when I have something far more interesting to say than I have tonight. Thanks to everyone who called/texted/emailed throughout my last week, it really meant a lot to me! Lots of love!