August 31, 2002 - Huntington Herald Dispatch: Value of a timepiece is of no matter in Moldova to PCV Nicole Sheets

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Moldova: Peace Corps Moldova : The Peace Corps in Moldova: August 31, 2002 - Huntington Herald Dispatch: Value of a timepiece is of no matter in Moldova to PCV Nicole Sheets

By Admin1 (admin) on Sunday, October 20, 2002 - 1:04 pm: Edit Post

Value of a timepiece is of no matter in Moldova to PCV Nicole Sheets

Read and comment on this story from the Huntington Herald Dispatch on Moldova PCV Nicole Sheets who is a person who wears a watch at:

Value of a timepiece is of no matter in Moldova*

* This link was active on the date it was posted. PCOL is not responsible for broken links which may have changed.

Value of a timepiece is of no matter in Moldova

By NICOLE SHEETS - guest columnist

Mitoc, my village, ticks on its own clock: The cows fan out into the street about 6 a.m. on their way to pasture, then clop home around 8 at night. Some goats follow, then the sheep.

Piatsa, too, tells the time. It’s a kind of farmers market where you can also buy perfume, techno music, clothes, dishes, hair dye, detergent, butterfly-shaped alarm clocks and the like. Strawberry season ended just after I arrived in June; cherries came and went. In early August, I bought pears, plums and peaches. These are harder to find now, but the melons loom and the grapes are ready for the table or wine press.

Piatsa itself takes on the deep colors of autumn: the eggplants’ purple-black, the earthiness of potatoes, the splash of yellow-green from the peppers, the red, constant like a friend, of the tomatoes that find their way into my lunches.

It’s a liminal time for Peace Corps trainees in Moldova as we pledge, under oath, to support the U.S. Constitution and our duties as official volunteers. After a summer of living near other Americans in the villages, tackling reams of language worksheets and taking field trips for folk music and Moldovan eats, we’ll scatter to our work sites, where we’ll live for the next couple of years.

This means I’ll leave Mitoc and move to Chisinau, Moldova’s capital and a city of about 750,000 people, before classes start at my university.

They say that as a Peace Corps volunteer, you can figure out who you are. I am a person who wears a watch.

One lesson my mother has imparted to me is the importance of a timepiece. When the battery in my Triathalon watch, the one with the velcro strap, gave up its little ghost, I felt a real sadness (rest assured, gentle reader, that I recently found a replacement battery in the city).

When my spare watch died, I panicked -- rapid heartbeat, shortness of breath, the whole bit. Desperate, I threw my butterfly-shaped alarm clock in my backpack, and at piatsa that afternoon, I bought a watch, one my dad would call an "el cheapo." I felt like a million bucks fastening its translucent purple strap around my naked wrist.

In the city, I don’t have the cows to tell me what time it is, or which way I should be walking.

Nicole Sheets is a Peace Corps volunteer in Moldova. Her e-mail address is Her column appears on the Life page the first Sunday of each month.

Click on a link below for more stories on PCOL

Top Stories and Discussion on PCOL
Sargent Shriver and the Politics of Life911:  A Different America
USA Freedom Corps - "paved with good intentions"PCV hostage rescued from terrorists
GAO reports on Volunteer Safety and SecurityPeace Corps out of Russia?
Help the New Peace Corps Bill pass CongressUSA Freedom Cops TIPS Program

Top Stories and Discussion on PCOL
Senior Staff Appointments at Peace Corps HeadquartersFor the Peace Corps Fallen
Senator Dodd holds Hearings on New Peace Corps LegislationThe Debate over the Peace Corps Fund
Why the Peace Corps needs a Fourth GoalThe Peace Corps 40th plus one
The Case for Peace Corps IndependenceThe Controversy over Lariam
The Peace Corps and Homeland SecurityDirector Vasquez meets with RPCVs
RPCV Congressmen support Peace Corps' autonomyPeace Corps Expansion:  The Numbers Game?
When should the Peace Corps return to Afghanistan?Peace Corps Cartoons

Some postings on Peace Corps Online are provided to the individual members of this group without permission of the copyright owner for the non-profit purposes of criticism, comment, education, scholarship, and research under the "Fair Use" provisions of U.S. Government copyright laws and they may not be distributed further without permission of the copyright owner. Peace Corps Online does not vouch for the accuracy of the content of the postings, which is the sole responsibility of the copyright holder.

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; PCVs in the field; COS - Moldova



Add a Message

This is a public posting area. Enter your username and password if you have an account. Otherwise, enter your full name as your username and leave the password blank. Your e-mail address is optional.