January 23, 2004: Headlines: COS - Nepal: Internet: Blogs - Nepal: Completion of Service Conference: Personal Web Site: Jim's life in Nepal

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Nepal: Peace Corps Nepal : The Peace Corps in Nepal: January 23, 2004: Headlines: COS - Nepal: Internet: Blogs - Nepal: Completion of Service Conference: Personal Web Site: Jim's life in Nepal

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Jim's life in Nepal

Jim's life in Nepal

Jim's life in Nepal

COS Conference and beyond (23 January 2004)

I got back from Kathmandu a few days ago. I went to the All-Volunteer Conference, also known as all-vol, and the Close of Service Conference, also known as COS. Both were pretty good. For all-vol, I led a cooking class on how to cook daal bhaat tarkari, the main staple of the Nepali diet, essentially rice, lentil soup, and vegetables. Lots of people came and it was a lot of fun. The COS conference was at the Hyatt in Kathmandu. It was plush. I fully appreciated every amenity. There was no limit to the amount of high pressure hot water that came out of the shower. There was also a big bathtub. I took several burning hot baths. I think I was removing layers of dirt (and maybe some skin). It felt strange to be so clean. The beds were real beds with actual mattresses. I enjoyed the central heat more than anything else, I think. The food was incredible. We had a buffet for every meal. I gorged myself. My last meal at the Hyatt, I ate 6 plates of food. It was all delicious. And on top of that, we had a nice conference. All the PCVs who are closing their service this Spring were there. It was a nostalgic time for me. This is the first time we have all been together as a group since training. I am in the process of creating a cd-rom/memory book for the 194 group.

Previous to the conferences, I took the Praxis test at the Lincoln School in Kathmandu, the only international school in Nepal. It was interesting to see this school that I had heard so much about. It was a Saturday so the heat was off. It was very cold in the classroom, which may have helped me be alert. The Praxis test was a lot easier than the GRE, which I took about two months ago. I am pretty sure I did well. The Praxis test is required for admission to one of the credential programs I am applying to.

After the conferences, I did some last minute work at the Peace Corps office. All the PCVs were in town, so the Peace Corps computers were rarely available. Throughout Kathmandu, you couldn't walk 20 meters without running into a PCV. It was fun, but after the two conferences I was ready to come home.

I didn't have much down time after getting home. I started working on my cd-rom project and a new project, a website for the AWON organization, the Active Women of Nepal. They supply scholarships to girls in Nepal, among other things. They have a website, but it is out of date and kind of unattractive: www.awon.org.np . I also had to plan my next teacher training, which is on Sunday. Today is Friday so I will go to Pokhara, pick up my mail, print my materials for my training, make copies, and head home.

I've been suffering from some gastrointestinal problem. I'm pretty sure I ate some bad food in Kathmandu on my last few days there. So annoying. It is very slowly improving each day.

Audrey is coming to visit me in Nepal. My last day in Peace Corps is April 7. Audrey is arriving around April 1 and we will leave Nepal together on about April 10. I am really excited. We are going to Thailand for a couple of weeks before heading back to America. It is hard to believe that I won't be coming back to Nepal after a few weeks. I am used to taking vacations, leaving the village, then coming back and having to readjust. Even after two years, it still shocks me that I live in a rural village in one of the least developed countries in the world. But after this vacation, I will readjust to living in a rural area in the most developed country in the world. I am a little worried, but excited. I am SO looking forward to seeing friends and family. I can't even think about it too much.

Right now I am focusing mostly on finishing up all the projects I have going on. It should not be too stressful to finish them. Most will naturally end soon, such as trainings. The last day of school is in about 6 weeks and I'll have about 5 weeks after that to complete everything.

And for what will hopefully be my last major frustration here, I have recently found out that my school might give another full-scale English training in the next few weeks. It is a 10-day training that we ALREADY did at the beginning of the school year. No one has asked me to be a trainer, naturally. I am sure they are waiting until the day before the training begins for that. Most of the school head teachers are opposed to the training because it is so close to finals. I clearly see their point of view. I told Shiva Sir what I thought about the whole thing and he is going to be my mole and find out the whole story today.

It's been warming up a bit lately. The cold mornings are not as cold. I am still too cold to bathe every day, but if and when the sun comes out, I head for the shower to take a warm bucket bath.

I have to get ready to go to Pokhara.

All my love,

When this story was posted in November 2004, this was on the front page of PCOL:

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Story Source: Personal Web Site

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Nepal; Internet; Blogs - Nepal; Completion of Service Conference



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