Ok, I am a little under the weather, but I am trying to not let that get in the way of me enjoying perhaps the most important of holidays. While I do believe, even someone who doesn’t should appreciate the idea of celebrating the birth of someone who gave up everything for everyone.
I’ll only be talking to my family and friends via telephone for the next few Christmases. Even while I am sacrificing trying to make some kind of difference in the world, they sacrifice by having incomplete holidays. Their sacrifices aren’t lost on me.
With special mention to my nephew Ethan who will likely never read this, I wish everyone and everyone they know a merry Christmas.
“Son of God sent down from above, cheer the whole wide world. Peace on Earth and goodwill toward all, and fill their Christmas with love.”
As of Wednesday, December 19th at about 6:15am CST, I was sworn in as a Peace Corps volunteer. I do feel a sense of accomplishment with this.
The ceremony was fun. Everyone had their name called along with where they are from, who their counterpart is and where they will be serving. I am proud to be the sole representative from Mississippi in the group, but I would be happier if there were more.
My host mom was able to attend. I’ve been through a lot with Raisa.
She is, without a doubt, one of the most amazing people I have met. She has so much love in her heart, I can hardly imagine it. Most people only get one mom in life. I happened to have the best ones from two different continents.
Now I am in Bakhchisaray. My host family here is cool. They fixed up my room a little since site visit. I have everything I need here for now. Tomorrow will be my first day at site as a actual volunteer. I am not doing any teaching until after the new year, but I need to start learning this place and its citizens. I need to see what they need, and what I, as their adopted American, can do to help. I hope I am up to the task.
With training behind me, all I can think is this: The worst is over; now the hard part begins.
Ok, so this year there are only a few weeks left and I only have 27 songs from albums this year that struck me as being awesome. Usually I have around 40 songs a year, although many of them don’t turn up until later when they are released as second/third singles.
That said, I have been out of the loop, so I wonder what I have missed out on. Anyone have any tips?
There is some hip hop song getting play on the radio here titled (in English) Born in the USSR. It’s supposed to have some, shall we say, interesting lyrics. Too bad I don’t understand most of them.
I missed it last week being sick and all. Well, actually, I didn’t miss it. I was just preoccupied.
I have a lot to be thankful for in life. Like everyone, I’ve had my rough patches. The end of December 2006, was as low as I have been laid. But hopefully what happened to me happens to most people. That is, little things changed. I started to see some small things that were positive. With those few things, my attitude perked up, and things have gotten steadily better since then.
I was thinking last night as I went to bed how lucky I am to have my family and to have grown up where I did. What I am most thankful for this year is the memories I have from being a child of Sunday dinner at my grandparents.
I think of how those Sunday’s were staples of my early youth. As bad as my memory gets now, I still remember seeing Granny cooking in the kitchen, those two liter glass bottle cokes and the wooden crates they came in and the spread of food. Mom knows that the gravy we had with those roasts holds a place of honor in my memory. I refer to it as Granny Gravy. I remember Paw sitting at the head of the table. I remember how excited I would get when Paw would ask one of us to go get his change can because it meant the Star Wars Man Fund was about to get an infusion. I remember arriving at their home and Paw sitting on the porch swing whittling.
Mostly I am very thankful I have these memories. I was eight when the second of my grandfather’s died. His wife followed him less than two years later. Out of all those sensations that intertwine with those memories, the strongest is the feeling of love I felt in that house…the sense of safety and security of being with people who would never let anything happen to me.
As I walk around the world today, I wonder how many people I see have had that experience. Did they have a grandfather to drive them down to the store and buy them ice cream? Do they know what it’s like to have so many people in a house talking after dinner that the cigarette smoke makes a visible layer of atmosphere in the living room? Do they know what it’s like to feel completely loved?