The Application Process Part II

  We knew we’d be able to come home whenever we wanted, theoretically. The Peace Corps does not want volunteers who don’t want to be there. It’s not the army, after all.   In practical terms, though, it would be … Read More

The Application Process, Part I

    “Flexibility, patience, and a sense of humor characterize the successful Peace Corps volunteer,” or PCV, as the recruiter actually said, using the acronym that would soon became part of our everyday vocabulary. He may have been referring to … Read More

Difficult conversations

In the Peace Corps, my official job was Teacher Trainer: I taught English at a teacher’s college. A few of my classes were taught in concert with a local teacher. Over my two years I team-taught with five different teachers. One … Read More


    “All you Americans ask ‘why’ all the time.” Assem’s simple comment caught me by surprise.   And it taught me a lot.   I began to notice the many times I did indeed ask “why?” But, more than … Read More

Recipe: Mother-in-law tongue

  My friend Abby once suggested that I add recipes from my time in Kazakhstan to my blog. “Everyone loves recipes,” she told me. A popular potluck dish has been on my mind lately, perhaps because the omnipresent eggplant has … Read More

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