This will likely be an earnest, though potentially infrequently updated, account of my adventures, tribulations,
and everyday experiences as I spend two years working as an environmental Peace Corps volunteer in Fiji

Thursday, July 21, 2011

A Real Volunteer You Say? The Rumors Abound...

Pictures from our transition from being Peace Corps trainees to full-fledged volunteers.

The going away dinner that our host families in Kasavu prepared for us. The food was delicious!

Most of our families and us. My Na is on the far left in the middle wearing the blue/white striped shirt. The volunteers in the picture are Kim (center), Milli, me, Brian, and Jon (left to right, respectively). The woman behind Brian and I is Viri, our language coordinator.

My Na and I! :)

Tearful goodbyes on the morning of swearing in. In the front, from left to right is Brian's Na, my Na, Milli's Na and Tuvula, her brother.

Swearing in at the Novotel Resort. Sam and Tim are clearly shocked.

The current Fijian president, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau, giving the keynote speech.

A spider eating a beatle that was caught in its web. This was taken in my bure in Nadave during the ICCP conference (after swear-in but prior to site move-in). A group of us sat enthralled by this for a solid 20 minutes, taking pictures and videos from all different directions and angles and under different lighting. I put this particular picture up partly because it looks cool, partly because it conveys the level of entertainment available to us at times, and partly to remind everyone how much of a bio geek I am (and so many other volunteers!).

That's my island! Ovalau! This was while I was waiting for the ferry to come and ferry me across to my new home.

Some of the ladies in my new village. We were standing on the one road on the island waiting for the carrier truck transport to come and take us all into town. It usually comes around 8 AM and brings us home after a long day of shopping some hours later. It's an exhausting affair and so many of these villagers do it more than once a week lugging gas cylinders for refilling or sacks of crops to sell on the street.

This is the boardwalk in Levuka, the only real town on Ovalau (and naturally where I restock from). Levuka is known as the old capital of Fiji.

A church in Levuka.

The main drag.

The Levuka (or rather Ovalau) library! Being that I'm the newest member, the librarian allowed me to take this picture.

Dinner in my house with my new family on one of my first nights in the village. They live in a separate house across the village but they consider me their family none the less. From left to right: Taufa (my Na), Taji (tachi-my brother), Nau (the oldest sister), Nau Levu (in the back, she is my great aunt and neighbor), and Vika (the middle sister). My last sister I haven't met yet, since she is away at school in town.

Look out for more pictures of my house, village, and the absurd bridge that I have now traversed in the middle of the night without light and weilding a pot of soup!

1 comment:

  1. Congratulations! So glad you are there safely and adjusting. It looks wonderful. What a fabulous adventure. So proud of you.

    Magnolia says hi :)