Shumë Mirë. ( Very good ! )

I am tired and it has been a long first week of training in Albania. However I am incredibly lucky.

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Tomorrow I embrace the awkward.

I am spending time with other volunteers so I don’t want to be blogging too long .

Orientation has been a whirlwind. It has included language lessons, briefings on safety, medical, introductory meetings with program staff, and some baby steps of walking around and talking to Albanians. We have been staying in a wonderful hotel in our central training city, known in peace corps terms as a hub city.

Tomorrow afternoon we leave for our host family sites that surround our hub city.

I most likely have even less access to internet. My host family city village is very small. I don’t know much else but my host family consists of a host mom, her 20 year old son who is a farmer and her 16 year old daughter who is a student. I’ll post more after I have spent some time there because now everything is inaccurate or hearsay.

The first few moments, or days, or weeks, or months with a host family can be uncomfortable and awkward. Your knowledge of Albanian language and culture is limited and requires a willingness to be a total fool in front strangers.

Embrace the awkward, have a laugh , maybe a shot of raki and enjoy.

Welcome to Peace Corps Albania !

Friends, Family and Luggage

The last two weeks have been invovled with packing, visiting, tears, joy, anxiety and

The Joy of Friends and Family

everything in between.

Packing was a process and I ended up having to take less than I expected and I probably still ended up over-packing.  As I write this though from the airport gate both my checked bags weighed in at approximately 50 lbs or less.  For those who I spoke to this week know that this was a major source of anxiety.

Thank you to everyone who I was able to see and speak to these two weeks and all those who have supported before.  I am feeling extremely lucky to have such wonderful friends and family in my life.

I am off to DC for a night with some amazing planner friends who I admire and

adore.Tomorrow I’ll meet face to face with the Peace Corps Albania crew and then off to Albania!