All of us might wish at times that we lived in a more tranquil world, but we don't. And if our times are difficult and perplexing, so are they challenging and filled with opportunity.

Robert Kennedy

Monday, July 1, 2013


What is our obsession with stuff?
I ask, because, I am currently packing all my 'stuff' and trying to fit it into 2 bags. Yes, I am 40 years old and I can fit all my 'stuff' into a backpack and a suitcase. Jealous? Probably not. I think we all have an obsession with stuff. Just the amount of stuff my roommate and I have given away to our Moldovan friends the past few days validates this thought. And I STILL have a ton of stuff to either get rid of or take with me.
I came here with 2 huge suitcases, a laptop bag, a camera bag and a small suitcase.
I am leaving with 1 huge suitcase, a laptop bag, a backpack and a camera bag. 
My current anxiety is do I ship the huge suitcase to California so I only have to travel with my backpack? Lovely thought...but once I get to Pennsylvania to spend time with my family, I still will only have a few things to wear. OR, do I lug this huge suitcase around Ireland with me. Yes, I could store it somewhere and pay money (not too much) but the point is, why am I so married to this stuff? 
I could make a cliched argument that it isn't the tangible 'stuff' I'm attached to, but just one last thing to cling to but I'm not gonna go down that path.
I will just say that packing is full of anxiety. 
Yesterday I spent all day with Sasha's family one last time. They are the greatest. Here is a short video of us all preparing a feast.

Sasha's Dad made "Mama Liga" and this is how you cut it to serve...with a string.

This is all the food we got to eat...yeah...yeah...

I have one week left. 
Tomorrow I will travel to Chisinau to meet the new trainees and here their site announcements. One last responsibility is to meet the new Cahul people and do my best to reassure them that they have indeed gotten the best placements.
Wednesday, one final visit to my training village of Stauceni to talk about my experience and say goodbye to my language instructors and original host family.
Thursday, the 4th, I will be back here in Cahul saying goodbye to my work partner Vica and a few other locals.
Friday will be spent cleaning the apartment and final details in Cahul.
Saturday I will be traveling to Chisinau for the last time to set up camp with Lindsay and Conrad for a few days. 
Monday, I have my final medical clearance interview, my interview with the country director, and what I'm most excited about, a final dinner with all my best friends at the steakhouse we went to for my birthday.
Tuesday, I ring the COS (Close of Service) Bell and get on a plane to Dublin.
Have I mentioned anxiety?


  1. Stuff is stuff. Your stories are the most precious things you'll carry with you. I'm so excited for you! :)

  2. Here's a great video from George Carlin about stuff:
    Enjoy! And your "stuff" Forgetaboutit! You can always buy new stuff!