So, it’s official. I have made the shift from Peace Corps Nominee to Peace Corps Trainee. As I type this I’m on an airplane 9 hours from Japan somewhere off the coast of British Columbia, Canada.
We spent all of Saturday in a room together becoming what was frequently called a “Peace Corps family”. Most of you know that sort of attitude fills me with immediate disdain and leaves a dirty taste in my mouth, but I have to begrudgingly admit that it is true. After only 24 hours of knowing these people we have all become fast friends. We have taken over the plane with our raucous excitement and fervor (much to the chagrin of our poor flight attendants), enjoying the free beer and sake for the last time before we hit Indonesia.
It was interesting to be the only local in the group. For everyone else this dream became real by the time staging began. For me, it was still a pipe dream. I had gone home after a long visit in Santa Cruz, that’s all. I was just in some long meeting and at the end I would go back to my cute apartment with my cute roommate and my depressingly regular routine, right? Not quite. Turns out I really did join the Peace Corps. Turns out I really am on a plane to Japan. Turns out it’s really happening, folks.
I left my whole world behind and it didn’t really sink in until today. I wasn’t really gone until 3 hours ago. This wasn’t really happening until right now. I miss my family terribly already. I miss my sister. I miss my best friend. But I am surrounded by support and excitement. Adventure is out there. I’m going to find mine and the ones that matter support me in that. They will also be here to receive me with open arms when I come home. I’m not dead, folks, I’m just moving to an island on the equator.