Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Saying goodbye to Oscar and other major milestones

On Monday afternoon I put Oscar, my car, up for sale. By yesterday afternoon I had sold him. It's weird to think that my car now belongs to someone else. He's been a good car - never given me any major problems and has hauled me and my friends up and down the mountain and to camping trips and concerts for the last five years. I'm not gonna lie, I did not expect him to go so quickly (and I was in a minor state of panic for about 24 hours at the reality of it) but I am also really excited for him to start a new life as someone's first car. The young girl who bought him absolutely fell in love and is thrilled to have him. I'm sure she will love him for some time to come. For that, I am happy. My parting note on this is: Thanks Oscar for being so cool and drive safely little dude!

In other "major milestone" news, I am in the midst of my first "unemployed" week! Last Friday was my goodbye party at work. It was so fun - full of balloons, streamers, and home-cooked food! I am so grateful to the Board members and staff who came and for my amazing coworkers and wonderful interns who put the party on! You guys are the best! THANK YOU! I will miss you all and will be sure to stop by for a game of Clue and a soy latte at Indaba before I go!

Another thing that has occupied a lot of my time is learning about technology... It is no secret to those who know me that my grasp on technology is a little lack luster. Most days this is not a problem (I mean, I can use everything in Microsoft Office and can process data and statistical analysis on SPSS) but, when it comes to buying a computer and understanding the lingo, well I fall a little short. This has been stressful for me because I like to research. A lot. But it really does me no good to research things if I have no idea what it's talking about. Yes, I am referring to the fact that I'm attempting to buy a new laptop to bring with me. The whole process has caused me some angst and I've had to call on a number of my more tech-savvy friends for guidance. Although I still haven't picked a laptop yet, I am getting much closer to that fateful day and I feel like I'm much better equipped to make the decision. The clock is ticking (22 days!) so I know I need to make that decision sooner rather than later! (Stay tuned!)

I have also been talking with my aunt about visiting her sixth grade class to discuss Peace Corps and, in particular, Botswana. In looking through past lesson plans, she came across one she had done many years ago about Africa. (Coincidence since I am going? Um, probably not!) Because of this, she has decided to do a unit with her team teacher about African animals. To get them excited about the unit, I am going to come in and talk to them and then, hopefully, be able to touch base a few times via Skype while I'm in Botswana to talk about the animals I'm seeing, so they can ask me questions about the ones they are studying, and so they can learn more about my experience. In doing this, the kids will be learning about the animals, the environment, the culture, etc of Africa. This is especially important for this group of kids because a number of them may never get the chance to travel or experience so many of the things we take for granted. (My aunt works in a very low income school district.) I am so excited to be able to share something like this with them and I hope so so much that this interaction will show them what is possible and inspire them to rise above their lot. I know the idea inspires me. I am so looking forward to it.

And tomorrow I leave for Seattle for a weekend of hugs and "see ya laters" with some of my very best friends. It is going to be a wonderful weekend! Which reminds me, time to go work on my costume... pics to follow!

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