Happy New Year

I will begin this email like we begin most meetings, with the Americorps pledge:

I will get things done for America to make our people safer, smarter, and healthier.
I will bring Americans together to strengthen our communities.
Faced with apathy, I will take action.
Faced with conflict, I will seek common ground.
Faced with adversity, I will persevere.
I will carry this commitment with me this year and beyond.
I am an Americorps member, and I will GET THINGS DONE!!! 
(the last part is said while pumping your fist in the air)

As I stated before, this pledge is said anytime the entire campus is together (meetings, PT, or shits and giggles). My team has adopted the last part of the pledge to use as motivation. For example, “I am an Americorps member, and I will hammer that nail, ” or “I am an Americorps member and I will stop asking Deanne (our team leader) where we are being sent for our first project,” or “I am an Americorps member and I will not fall asleep during disaster relief training. 

We also like to place Ameri in front of words to make them fit us better. Some examples are… 

  • Americest (relationships involving people on the same team)
  • Amerilove (relationships involving people on different teams)
  • Ameriswear (swearing while in the A(uniform) this is not allowed)

the list goes on but those are my favorites

Cool things about being down south:

  • Alligators: scary yet awesome
  • Tree frogs: they are all over houses
  • Lizards: sweet
  • Foxes: there are 2 that are basically our dorm pets, they hang out with us outside…names are Jamie and Sylvester
  • Lady’s nights: skating, karaoke, pretty much everything is cheaper for girls down here or just free
  • People are ridiculously friendly: People say “Hi” and greet people they don’t know. They are all super friendly and hospitable.

Not so cool things

  • Fire ants: hurt a lot, invade people’s beds, nests are EVERYWHERE
  • Sexism: girls are supposed to have babies, and any heavy lifting might prevent us from having babies. For example, we were working at a heart walk, and were asked to go over help unload a truck. My teammate Jen and I went over to help. This is the conversation:

Man: “ummm…I’m going to need some guys” 
Us: “Let us try to lift it, I think we can do it” 
Man: “Well…I know I shouldn’t be saying this…but I really need some guys, where are they at? ” 
Us: “Well you only have us two right now, let us try” 
Man: “Be my guest, but don’t say I didn’t warn you… ” 
Jen and I proceed to lift the tank and carry it to the designated area, ignoring the man’s stuttering. (yes, I am aware that it is because of sexism that there are lady’s nights…but…I’d give them up).
  • Heat: It’s getting cooler, but it’s still gross
  • Smell: paper mill mixed with salt fishy water, mixed with sewage segregation: it is ridiculous.

We are almost done with training, and we leave for our first project on Oct 13. We still don’t know what it is, but there is a big chance that I will find out tomorrow night.

We finally finished disaster relief training. Let me describe the class…blah blah blah blah (in a droning voice) blah paperwork paperwork paperwork blah blah blah crappy video blah blah blah …oh wait, I just had a realization…everything they are telling us is either common sense or is written in the papers they handed out…I think I’ll play I spy with Joy…yet this training was 32 hours long!!!!!!!!

That’s how I feel about lots of our training, it could be summed up in about 1/4 of the time. But I guess its better to be safe then sorry.

Ok, so off to team volleyball game. The entire corps is in the tournament…too bad none of us have ever played volleyball…we could have won something.

Happy new year to those who celebrate.

Happy birthday Katya and Maggie…Maggie's was yesterday, and Katya’s is tomorrow…everyone wish them a happy birthday!!!!!