Friday, May 27, 2011
Where There Is No GPS
So yesterday I was out in the bush, desperately trying to find a meeting that it turned out wasn't ever scheduled, trying in the limited amount of icilala I know to find out where Tazara West was and once I was in it how to get to the depot (pronounced de-pot). My bike chain was full of sand, and I was exhausted from the 30k bike ride and all day "how to run an under 5 clinic" workshop (which seemed to be a huge success, though I won't judge for sure until after they continuously hold under 5 clinics in their community) I had done in Chibanga the day before. I had also managed to get myself lost in the bush earlier that day trying to find the stream to wash my clothes in, so the last thing I wanted to do at that moment was to be biking through sand trying to find a meeting. I had my ipod on shuffle and had been listening to a variety of america house and pop music when I finally decided I had had enough and was going to head home. At that moment I looked up and took my headphones out, because I had to stop and take in what I was looking at. The maize field in front of me had been harvested and lay in dead dry stalks across the ground. A weed had overtaken the field, it's tall with soft downy red on the top, it blows quite beautifully in the wind. Behind this was a grove of dark green trees, and behind that a dark purple mountain shrouded in fog. It was a beautiful, peaceful moment. Suddenly all the frustration from not finding the meeting spot (and later finding out that the meeting had never been scheduled in the first place- classic pc zambia volunteer conundrum), the exhaustion from bike riding and bush path blazing, the homesickness that still comes in unexpected and unusual waves was all worth it for this moment. It not only made me appreciate the beauty of the place I am now calling home, but also an appreciation of the people I live with and interact with on a daily basis, and an excitement for the work I am finally starting in the village. I have a quote on my wall "there is a lot in life that is hard, but find the good" Life as a peace corps volunteer isn't always the beautiful and magical life that I had envisioned, but I'm starting to learn when is anything ever what exactly what we envisioned. Not that I don't have the beautiful and magical moments, and this was one of them. I appreciate those moments so much more now, not because they are rare, but because they are beautiful, and usually they are all mine, I don't have to share these moments with anyone, sometimes it's the only moment I feel truly alone in any given day.