This was a busy weekend, and I have limited time to post before I need to head back to training. So, let’s see what comes out:
On Friday some of the current volunteers stationed on Pohnpei stopped by for lunch. Apparently they were house sitting for some other foreigners since they had a dog following them around. It’s a dog that acts like I would expect a dog to behave–a happy, friendly companion. I first encountered him just after he had rolled in some thick stinking mud. He looked pretty pleased with himself.
Later that evening a group of us newbies got to hang out with a different set of currently serving volunteers who let us in on some less-sanitized versions of stories that had been brought up in training. They also showed us where it is possible to obtain tacos complete with sour cream, salsa, and guacamole. Also, I discovered a tiny gecko crawling around on my shirt.
On Saturday part of my training class went out to the old Japanese airstrip (Langer airbase I think?) to have our hands-on water safety training. For those of you who don’t know me, water activities are possibly my least favorite possible options. I have a deep and lasting fear of water that a) is too deep for me to stand up in b) has things living in it that might touch/eat/or slime me and c) is not in the form of a shower drinking water. The ocean, for the most part, fails every single one of these tests. But I survived, clearly, and I even did the part of the training that involved tossing my life vest overboard and then jumping in after it and putting it on in the water. After all that we spent some time snorkeling, even spotting some manta rays, a grey reef shark, and a lot of lumpy brown things on the bottom that I am pretty sure were corals and sponges. Hopefully in the next couple of years I will find a way to enjoy being in the water a little more.
I spent most of Sunday hanging out with my host family. On Sundays Kolonia pretty much shuts down and people go to church and/or hang out with their families. So I continued to work on learning Kapingan (Kapingese? Kapingi?). I can now somewhat reliably produce simple sentences stating what something is or is not doing. For example:
Di puti e kadi di gimoputi. Translation: The cat bites the rat.
Di pan e wuwu. Translation: The dog barks.
Nya manu hakale kii. Translation: The birds are not sleeping.
As you can tell, I am a great conversationalist in Kapingan.
Also, the name Peace Corps may not be entirely accurate, as a I met and defeated my first two cockroach adversaries in battle at some point in the last few days.
Photos of possible interest:
Tomabiig = piglet. This one was behind me when I took the picture below.
It’s quite a bit steeper than it looks.
Evidence that at least once I got out onto the ocean.
A sharpie for comparison.