|By Admin1 (admin) (pool-151-196-123-27.balt.east.verizon.net - 22.214.171.124) on Sunday, February 20, 2005 - 2:45 pm: Edit Post|
My Peace Corps service in Mombasa
Mombasa RPCVs - Share a story about your Peace Corps service in Kenya.
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When did you serve? How long were you there? What was your job? Where did you live? What's the funniest thing that happened to you while you were serving? Have you been back since you left the Peace Corps? If so, how have things changed? What did you learn from your service? What do you think you accomplished? What would you have done differently? What would you tell a prospective volunteer who is going to Kenya?
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|By Ben Manalo (c-67-175-249-80.hsd1.il.comcast.net - 126.96.36.199) on Friday, November 04, 2005 - 9:38 pm: Edit Post|
I served in Ramisi from 1993-1995 which is about 60 km south of Mombasa- about halfway between Mombasa and the Tanzania border. There I taught secondary school English to Form I, II, III (equivalent to freshman, soph, and junior year).
There were so many funny things which I experienced while living and working in Kenya. Many of them were not necessarily funny at the time, though. ...Trying to carry a bucket of water from the well to my home on my head w/water sloshing all over me. (I did have a FEW cup fulls left by the time arrived!)... then trying to transport a HUGE jug of water on the back of my bike. What a disaster! The jug was so heavy that the bike kept flipping over. I couldn't even sit on it to start pedaling.
This was definitely a life-changing and life-defining period for me. It's hard to say actually what I accomplished during my stay because I really feel that the most powerful impact that my community & I had on each other was simply demonstrating that people are people no matter where you go. We're all human. We all laugh, have pain, want to help and be helped.
My best piece of advice for any current or potential Peace Corps Volunteer: Laugh... A LOT!!! Laugh at yourself. Laugh at your learning, your challenges, and insecurities. Laugh at the circumstances you find yourself in. After a certain point, there really isn't anything else you CAN do!