Tag Archives: soccer

The Shadow into Morning

The Shadow into Morning

Someone asked me last weekend why I joined Peace Corps: to change the world? or just to make a difference?

When I pondered the question, a single word bubbled up: experience. “Experience” spans the range of my motives, from personal delight in experiencing a new continent for the sixth time, to professional goals of gaining experience in working overseas.

Above either of those aims, I also desired “experience” in the sense of gaining maturity and wisdom.

“Though it cost all you have, get wisdom…”

So far, Peace Corps South Africa has delivered on all three aspirations. This past month, my lesson in wisdom has taught me to hope during dark and doubtful times.

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Strength So To Train Them

Strength So To Train Them

What ingredients combine in the making of a Peace Corps Volunteer? This past weekend, our training stirred in a dollop of history, a splash of community, and a generous pinch of fun.

Peace Corps brought our cohort to a rolling boil with a trip to Pretoria for a guided tour of the Voortrekker Museum. Trainees later debated whether we should invest our resources in experiencing a symbol of apartheid history and Afrikaner nationalism firsthand. Although the controversies left us divided in opinion, at the time we could all agree to revel in the fresh air, striking architecture, and startling heights.

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Eso! Eso! Adelante!

Eso! Eso! Adelante!

Randi playing soccerA dirt field, concrete bleachers, and five teams of adolescent athletes gathered on a milky afternoon in Chaco to celebrate Ecuador’s passion, “futbol.”  The province of Napo had organized the games as part of an inter-canton tournament.  (“Cantons” are member states roughly equivalent to counties in the U.S.  Trivia: Switzerland divides itself into cantons, too.)  Other competitions included basketball, wrestling, soccer, chess, and even Tae Kwon Do!

Kevin’s oldest son, Ezra, plays for the Archidona team.  They had succumbed in their first game to Napo’s capital, Tena, but rallied to win the next two.  Now Archidona hoped to claim second-place in the tournament by triumphing in this fourth and final game. Read the rest of this entry