Sunday, July 29, 2007

the Shakers invented clothespins

So what did Erin do today you might ask? Well, let me tell you.

First I finished Eve Ensler's "Insecure at Last," an excellent read for anyone who is interested in feminism and learning about atrocities commited based on gender. And I then read some of "Body Hunters," which is about Western doctors and drug companies testing unapproved drugs on impoverished people. And then I watched TransAmerica, a very good movie (I have rekindled my love for Dolly Parton with her theme song to that movie, "Travelin' Thru"'s a foot-stompin', knee-slappin' kind of a tune. I felt inspired to whip out some spoons and start a jam session) and a documentary on the Shakers. So I had an educational day. I didn't even take a nap, a true sign of productivity. The end.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

you look like you stole that hammer

So I thought I would write today. I'm so excited that it is officially less than two months before I depart for Philadelphia. I just need to make it through these last weeks of work, staring at a computer in my six by six cube. I do have some good stories from working at the seminar company though. The people there have always been great and extremely entertaining to talk to - always willing to lie on their stomachs to get a stray quarter for you from under the soda vending machine (and yes, this did happen to me). "I think I can reach it as long as it isn't next to the mousetrap." There's the woman who keeps a badminton racquet in her cube to carry with her for her afternoon walk so that she is armed if the protective, nesting bird swoops on her. Then there was the motivation meeting last summer, when I got to say "My name is Erin and I am a gem." And we swung our arms, hands clasped and sang like it was Christmas morning in Whoville.

I also miss working at the bookstore. I can't help it. I have a hard time letting go of things sometimes. I miss the people I worked with and my friends who worked there. I miss my sweet sweet 33% discount. But I've tried this new thing called the library and it seems to suit my needs just fine. Waiting for the middle of September to roll around with my flight to Africa, I feel like the small child waiting in line at the mall to see the Easter Bunny or Santa. You are hopping up and down, painstakingly excited to get to your destination. Then when you get there, you are stunned and terrified. Well, I'm just hoping I'm not the one who wets their pants.

I just came off of a weekend of managing a thrift sale with my sister. It went off well. We had some hagglers and some hilarious people. My sister and I particularly enjoyed the few people who as they were leaving, thanked us and told us that they had fun. And I also enjoyed the conversation we had with a girl involving Kathy Matthea's greatest hits. And the little girl who was only happy once her mother bought her something - settling on a 10 cent stuffed Bartok from the animated movie, Anastasia. We also met our paper man, who turned out to be quite the fireball. And then there was Kara, hammering in our thrift sale signs and then sprinting back to the car for no reason at all. Yes, many good stories from this weekend.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Testing, 1...2...3

I am going to Africa September 25th to teach English. In particular, I am going to Mozambique. So, in the two months before I am to leave, I have created this blog so that I can share my experiences. I will be gone for 27 months so I should have dollops of things to say while I am there - as long as I have internet access. I am excited and thrilled right now and I'm figuring the nervous part sets in about a week before I go. Two years is a long time to be away from family and friends. My first real grown-up experience. I really don't know what to expect because I don't know what type of living conditions I'll have once I settle in or the type of community I'll be living in until December. I go through a 3-month period of training in Maputo until December. I then put my nose to the grindstone for two years and come home in December of 2009. If I like it enough and feel like I have been useful, I'll extend my stay a year. I've wanted to go to Africa for the longest time and now it's happening. Stay tuned.