Monday, November 28, 2011

Dear Mom

Dear Mom

I know you and grandma taught me how to wash my clothes by hand, and shower with a bucket. But I miss you. We both knew if I avoided cleaning my clothes you guys would jump in and save me. I have decided to take on researching teleportation as a side project. In the mean time I have sent you a gift that will be coming in two to three weeks with a note attached to it saying "Please Clean".

Botswana Livin'

Friday, November 25, 2011

An Important Setswana Word

An important word that I have learned in Botswana is pula.

Pula =Botswana Currency

This word can be used for just about anything. For example:
Give me my pula?
Where is my pula?
Heck no, I'm not giving you my pula.

This word has been crowned my new favorite word.

Without Pula :(

Thursday, November 3, 2011


My weeks have been filled with training, spending time with my host family, studying, and exploring my village. Out of all of these things most of my time is spent in training. Training is from Monday to Saturday and covers a breadth of topics that will be key to assisting us in our roles in our communities. On an overall, most of training can be grouped into five main topics.

In comparison to previous Peace Corps training sessions, security sessions have been increased. These sessions equip us on how to prevent crime, where to go, what to do, and who to call if crime does happen.

Botswana Culture and Language
It is essential to our roles as volunteers to integrate into our communities and adapt to our new homes. In addition to living with our host families, we are provided language lessons and cross cultural workshops. These workshops provide us the opportunity to exam cross-cultural differences and similarities between the Batswana and Americans. Additionally, our group goes on mini field trips to cultural events around town in order to gain an appreciation of the Batswana culture, customs, and traditions.

Every country works with Peace Corps for different reasons. While all of the volunteers have different backgrounds and skill sets, our core goal is HIV/AIDS Capacity Building Volunteers. With this in mind, our training focuses on educating the causes of HIV/AIDS within Botswana,  and what we can do as volunteers in our various roles.

Personal Health
In addition to learning a new culture, language, etc, we have the luxurious opportunity of encountering new bugs, new climate, and new sicknesses and disease. With all this in mind, sessions are incorporated into our training that teaches us how to cope and overcome things we have or will encounter. Personal Health includes emotional and physical health, which is very important as there are many potential stress factors that a person will encounter living in another country for two years.

Peace Corps Policy
Lastly, policy is also stressed during training in order to ensure that we promote the three missions of Peace Corps in a safe manner.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Toliet Paper

In Botswana, having toilet paper available in the bathroom is not the norm. People normally carry or keep the toilet tissue with them to the bathroom. Coming from a culture that is discreet about their time in the bathroom, walking around with toilet tissue feels like a walk of shame. Each time I pick up the toilet tissue and carry it to the bathroom, I feel like people are staring and whispering “You know where she is going.” Luckily, I am happy to say I am not the only one who feels this way. One of my fellow trainee’s took the time to inform us of her destination to the toilet, after grabbing the toilet tissue. This was very helpful as there was no doubt in our minds where she was going.

In honesty, my feelings are paranoia, but I will like to say if I have to carry around toilet tissue, it would be nice to make it an accessory. So please send me toilet tissue covers.