Waiting so far
Salt Lake City Travel Blog› entry 1 of 26 › view all entries
Note: This is the first entry of the blog. Later entries can be found by either clicking on the "next entry" tab at the top of the blog text or by clicking on one of the links such as "Masazir" or "Ceyranbatan" on the bottom right hand of the page.
The contents of this website are mine personally and do not reflect any position of the U.S. government or the Peace Corps.
This is going to be a blog about my experiences as a Peace Corps volunteer in Azerbaijan. I'll be writing about travel, the food, the customs and my frustrations as well I am sure. At this point, I'm still in the United States, but I will be leaving in 3 weeks.
My particular brand of wanderlust was born in Mexico, or at least that is where I first recognized it. I was a Mormon missionary at the time (I am no longer religious now though), and as a missionary I was bound by a strict set of rules. Although I could look at the hills and the mountains and dream about going to them just to see what was around the bend, or just beyond the hills, I couldn't go. My favorite times were when I could take a long bus ride somewhere new, or when I was visiting a remote village somewhere.
In Costa Rica I didn't have those rules any longer. My roommate and I would sluff classes (we were studying abroad) and take a bus somewhere just to see where it went. We found some of the craziest things and some of the most pristine and untouched beaches doing this. It was an amazing experience.
It is too bad that I will never be able to travel like I really want to. I'll never be able to afford it being a teacher, especially if I have kids one day. That is what initially drew me to the Peace Corps. Humanitarian service plus free travel to a far away country and the potential to learn a couple new languages really sold me to the idea. It really is an experience that I personally couldn't let pass.
Unfortunately, it has been a costly experience. I could have been teaching since December 07, when I got my degree and license. Since I never really knew when I was going to be leaving, I opted to not get a job. I have been working some pretty bad jobs since then, making almost nothing and relying on my parents for support. Also, as a teacher, raises in salary are dependant on the amount of years had working in the field. I will be giving up nearly 3 years of pay raises. I have sacrificed relationships, I will be leaving friends behind and worst of all I have felt like I have wasted 9 months of my life. I'm not a big fan of wasting time.
Basically, I am relying on the hope that my experiences over there will all be worth it.
I will be leaving for Philadelphia, PA on the 19th, and then on around the 21st I will be heading off to Azerbaijan for 27 months. While I am really excited to go, I am still making sure that I enjoy the present and take the time to really be with my friends and family before I am gone for good.
I hope you keep up with my journal, it should be a great experience.