gone in 2419200 seconds

Which is four weeks. I’m not sure why I titled this post that way. I was going to write “gone in four weeks.” But that made me think of the movie “Gone in 60 seconds.” So there you go.

Anyway, the point is that in 4 weeks from today, on February 12th, I will be flying out of the Des Moines airport (assuming no bad weather) early in the morning and will arrive in Philadelphia before lunch. Then I check into a hotel (paid for by the Peace Corps) where we will be doing our “staging”event.

Staging is basically day or so of pre-departure training, where we talk about what the Peace Corps is, how we are supposed to act, and anything we need to know before we get into the country. Then, on the 13th, we start the long flying process to get to Uganda. The flight itinerary I was given didn’t make much sense to me (it says we fly out of New York, so it might be missing a flight, a train, or just be wrong), so all I know is that we leave at 6pm on the 12th and arrive in Uganda on the 14th. So it will be a lot of traveling.

I’m still quite excited, though I have had a few short bouts of nervousness. And when I say “a few” I mean two or three. And when I say “short” I mean about a minute. Anyone who knows me will understand that that is a lot of nervousness for me.

I spend much more time being excited.

At this point I have nearly everything that I need. I’m trying to pack as ligthtly as possible. Though I’m allowed 80 pounds of stuff checked, I’m going to try to stay below 50. Or even 40. I don’t think it will be that hard. The high liklihood of not having electricity makes this easier, since it doesn’t make sense to bring a computer or many other electronics. I got a neat little solar charger, though, which I can use to charge cell phones and other small gadgets. When I get everything packed up, I’ll post a picture  to (hopefully) show off my mad light-packing skills. I still need to learn how to pack stuff without it getting wrinkled, though…

3 thoughts on “gone in 2419200 seconds

  1. Adam,

    Philly is only about an hour’s drive from NYC. (We Northeasterners measure distance in time.) So you’ll probably be taking a car, train, or bus from there to the airport.

    Stop being so nervous so often and for so long!!


  2. You’re taking a bus there. The flight should be 20 hours, 2 hours or so delay in Brussels (the group that came last year missed the plane and got a free day in Brussels) and with the 7 hour time difference you should arrive at midnight (that’s when I arrived).

    You’d be surprised how much everything weighs. I was at 85 pounds or so (they aren’t that strict with the weight limit), but I could’ve gone with a lot less than I did. You should think about bringing a laptop (or at least an iPod). Most villages have cell phone charging using car batteries (when there’s no electricity). Even if you don’t have electricity your organization should have it.

    Lets see… you should be doing 8 weeks of training in Wakiso, which is just northwest of Kampala (my group was 10 weeks in Luweero, not fun). Your group is kind of replacing my group which was entirely stationed in the central and eastern districts. Central is the area from the TZ border on the lake sweeping eastward to the Nile River and the language is Luganda (this is the largest language group in training). East is a bunch of languages. You have the Basoga (Nile to almost the border with Kenya but centered around Jinja and Iganga, also my tribe), Bagwere (centered around Palisa and Budaka), Japadhola (Tororo), Bagishu (Mbale) and Teso (Soroti, Kumi and oddly enough Tororo). My group also had the Basamia but that area is dangerous so I think it’s closed down for your group (centered around Busia). I think your group is 55 people (supposed to be 60 but with budget cuts…) and is mixed primary teacher training, secondary education (teaching high school) and economic development.

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