April 6, 2003: Headlines: COS - St. Vincent: PCVs in the Field - St. Vincent: Photography - St. Vincent: Personal Web Site: Aaron's Peace Corps Journal in St. Vincent

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Saint Vincent: Peace Corps Saint Vincent : The Peace Corps in Saint Vincent: April 6, 2003: Headlines: COS - St. Vincent: PCVs in the Field - St. Vincent: Photography - St. Vincent: Personal Web Site: Aaron's Peace Corps Journal in St. Vincent

By Admin1 (admin) (pool-151-196-239-147.balt.east.verizon.net - on Thursday, August 26, 2004 - 5:58 pm: Edit Post

Aaron's Peace Corps Journal in St. Vincent

Aaron's Peace Corps Journal in St. Vincent

Curse of the Monkey Head" 03/09/2003

Yesterday I went up to Sandy Bay to search for Carib pottery with Kevin. The village's old primary school property has shards of old pottery lying everywhere. Kevin and I decided to collect as much of it as we can because during the last tropical storm, some houses just down the hillside went into the sea. The next big storm will likely take the old school, pottery and all. The locals were wondering why we would spend all day in the hot sun collecting "stones". We found some pretty good pieces. I bet that there are some impressive artifacts hiding under the hillside. I can't imagine what has already been washed away.

The best piece that I found resembles a monkey head. Long ago there were monkeys on the island, but they were hunted out. I also found all different sizes and shapes of pottery. Kevin found some pieces with interesting patterns in them. I did feel like sort of a plunderer even though I was just picking up "stones". Kevin plans on framing the pieces he found and giving them back to his community before he leaves. I'll probably donate mine to the collection as I would feel bad keeping them. Hopefully they will be well taken care of.

The last week I have been teaching a course for the teachers at the primary school. They are doing fairly well, but the twenty-two of them are a real handful. I do have an assistant, Nigel, who has been assigned to me through a youth program. He is kind of like an intern. As of yet, he doesn't have very much experience with computers. Hopefully I'll be able to teach him some stuff. He seems to be much more interested in bothering girls than anything else, so it makes it a little difficult.

The Rat and the Cheese" 03/02/2003

This has been a very busy week. I was going to start a new computer course for the teachers that work at the primary school, but on Friday I was told that I had to attend MCSE training all week instead. That meant that I had to wake up at 5:30 to travel all the way to Ottley Hall. Then nine and a half hours of Microsoft this and Microsoft that. After that, the trek home. That left little time for anything other than going straight to bed. I missed being able to hang out with my neighbors in the afternoon. I did learn quite a bit though.

On Thursday the Ministry of Foreign Affairs had a cocktail party for the Peace Corps volunteers in honor of Peace Corps Day. It was really nice, except that some of the volunteers drank a little too much again. Fortunately I wasn't one of them this time. Seeing as the slightest little sip of alcohol gives me a headache I've decided to just give up trying. Let me see...Nasty tasting beer or a nice yummy Orange Ju-C (Ju-C is the local brand of soda pop).

Today, I went for a hike to the falls of Baleine with Kevin, Martha, Matt, Amanda, and Mr. Kim. Mr. Kim is Kevin's neighbor and the principal at the Owia primary school. The hike was really tough. The trail skirts along the North edge of the volcano, so it is very very steep. You are always going straight up or straight down on a trail that is tilted to one side and very muddy. Then there are the thorny palm trees, itchy plants, and mosquitoes. The forest is extremely thick which makes it ideal for ganja farming. Only about 30 minutes after we had left the last town, Fancy, we came across a guy with a shotgun guarding the trail. Good thing we had Mr. Kim along. There are ganja farms everywhere. It isn't too dangerous to be wandering around if you are a scruffy looking Peace Corps hiking to the falls. Look out if you are a tourist though. Chances are pretty good that you will be donating your backpack to pirates as most tourists try to take a boat to the falls. Anyways...The falls are incredible. Well worth the 8 hour hike. Unfortunately, I don't really have a good picture of the falls since the mist kept fogging up my camera lens.

"Shipwreck" 01/18/2003

Today I went to check out the shipwreck that is a little ways south of Georgetown. Usually most of it is below the sand, but I was told that you can see a lot more of it than usual. It must have been a pretty big boat because only the very bottom remains, and it is pretty big. I'm surprised that there is even anything left of it because the waves were really pounding on it. I don't know how old it is, but probably at least 80 or so years. I then walked further south to black point tunnel. It was made to allow the sugar plantations easier access to a warf at Byera. There is a really nice picinic area there and I had my first real tourist sighting on this side of the island. After the tunnel, I walked on to Byera on the highway. From there I walked down the beach to Colonarie. I was going to continue walking to South Rivers, but a van came and made the effort to stop for me so I took it. Adventures like this are pretty darn easy when you go solo. I had a hard time recruiting someone to go with me. All the other peace corps were busy, and most Vincentians refuse to walk more than 100 yards (I am not exaggerating), so it was just me and Jesus. As usual.

Some of the other Peace Corps are going to go to Trinidad for Carnival. I think that on the New Year's trip I learned my lesson. Big party things just aren't my style. I wind up just being a tag-along party pooper. I'll try and visit Trinidad sometime when I can appreciate it for what it is.

When this story was prepared, here was the front page of PCOL magazine:

This Month's Issue: August 2004 This Month's Issue: August 2004
Teresa Heinz Kerry celebrates the Peace Corps Volunteer as one of the best faces America has ever projected in a speech to the Democratic Convention. The National Review disagreed and said that Heinz's celebration of the PCV was "truly offensive." What's your opinion and who can come up with the funniest caption for our Current Events Funny?

Exclusive: Director Vasquez speaks out in an op-ed published exclusively on the web by Peace Corps Online saying the Dayton Daily News' portrayal of Peace Corps "doesn't jibe with facts."

In other news, the NPCA makes the case for improving governance and explains the challenges facing the organization, RPCV Bob Shaconis says Peace Corps has been a "sacred cow", RPCV Shaun McNally picks up support for his Aug 10 primary and has a plan to win in Connecticut, and the movie "Open Water" based on the negligent deaths of two RPCVs in Australia opens August 6. Op-ed's by RPCVs: Cops of the World is not a good goal and Peace Corps must emphasize community development.

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Story Source: Personal Web Site

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - St. Vincent; PCVs in the Field - St. Vincent; Photography - St. Vincent



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