You Better Appreciate This!

19 August 2005
8:28 PM

Somehow, we finished the two week overseas volunteer orientation. Today, we took all the people from Catholic Relief Services and the other participating groups to the airport. It was again difficult to say goodbye. Though we hadn’t known one another for very long, you form friendships quickly when they’re built around a common cause or experience. Saying so many goodbyes has been somewhat emotionally draining over the course of the past 3 weeks. First my friends and family at home, then the domestic associates, now the other overseas volunteers, and my family again (Erin, Mom, and Dave) on Sunday.

On a more upbeat note, Roy and I put together a short list of things to make sure we appreciate this weekend because we won’t have them for a long time. Some of the things are pretty obvious, others not:

  • Being completely fluent in the primary language of the country
  • Ice cubes
  • The stars and constellations in the Northern Hemisphere
  • Eating and drinking with wanton disregard for food safety
  • Movies in English
  • National Public Radio
  • Washing machines (apparantly more Chilean families have them, but we do not)

We don’t have any major activities planned for the weekend, so we’ll just kick back and relax before we leave the country on Tuesday. Mom and Dave have arrived to help Erin move into Welsh Family Hall. Tomorrow night we are going to dinner together so my family can meet the people who will populate my stories for the next couple of years.