Tomorrow marks my group's 8-month anniversary of being sworn-in volunteers. In another 18 months I'll be giggling at how big a deal this date seemed.
As implied by the previous post, I spent a splendid three weeks at home in California with my beautiful family. The cold weather, freedom to go out & about, and church family were the highlights.
About week before leaving for my Christmas leave, PC removed me from my community. They concurred with various safety and security concerns I've been having over the past 6 months, and being a relatively high-risk post, staff takes these issues very seriously. Going through a site change means lots of waiting time and very little "knowns."
Since I have been in "limbo," I've been crashing near the PC office and reporting for work here daily. I've accomplished a few things such a spring cleaning (since there's no seasons here, it's spring cleaning time year-round), curriculum writing/review, and being a second opinion on many other matters. Here is my temporary taking over of our PC Volunteer Leader's desk. They are kind to let me join them.
In the evenings I've been helping coach and train the Jamaican National Youth Water Polo team. My, what a blast that's been! Another volunteer kindly put me in contact with the head coach, who was more than thrilled to have me come out.
The team is comprised of newly-recruited junior high and high school-aged girls and boys. Their ages range from 11-17 or 18. I have been practicing in the water with them, pulling individuals who may need help at a given time. Last night I watched them scrimage each other for the first time, and I equate their skill level to that of my high school freshman team.
Every muscle in my body aches, as I have not practiced this sport for at least 3-4 years now! The coaches, athletes, and parents are all kind and thank me for coming out. I do plan to keep in contact to be able to work with them in the future.
Tomorrow I move to my new site, about an hour from my first placement. I'll be doing the same sort of work: working with elementary-aged children in the school setting. I'm ready to be settled again, to be in a (somewhat) familiar environment, and to continue doing what I came here to do: impact the lives of Jamaican children through teaching and positive reinforcement.
Look for posts and pictures to come!
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