This blog is a personal publication and does not reflect the views or opinions of the US Peace Corps or US Government...

Thursday, December 31, 2009


Well, here is my method for staying in touch with those of you in the first world who are interested in what I am doing and/or remember that I still exist!

I will attempt to update this every month or so during my posting when I actually have internet, which is only available in the cities. I will be leaving here on March 1st and, over the next two months, I will update this with information as I learn more about my assignment. Right now I am in the "reading phase" where I am devouring every Morocco book I can get my hands on and I am valiantly attempting to get a head start on learning Arabic... It's interesting.

Here's what I know so far regarding my actual assignment: I am posted to Morocco, which is in the Northwestern corner of the African Continent. Although it is directly across the Mediterranean from Europe, the culture is an overwhelmingly 98.7% Muslim, while the 1.1% Christian and the 0.2% Jewish make up the fringes. It is a country of extremes with the climate ranging from near-arctic winters in the High Atlas Mountains (Jebel Toubkal, the highest peak in Morocco, is 13,617 feet high) to scorching desert summers in the Southeast which is dominated by the Sahara. Throw in the rugged coasts, semi-arid plains, and lush, burgeoning river valleys, Morocco is not all that "Casablanca" depicted it to be...

I have been assigned as a volunteer in the Peace Corps Morocco Environmental Education program this could entail many different things but, as a generalization, I will likely be teaching about Biology, Ecology, and Resource Management in a village within, or on the fringes of, a National Park (yes they have them!). I may also get the opportunity to train Park Staff and help organize management plans (things far beyond my American GS-5 pay grade) for the Park where I work. Granted, these are all just ideas, and in reality I have no idea as to where they'll put me. All I know for sure, is that training starts March 1st (stateside), I arrive in Morocco March 3rd (for 3 months of Pre-service training, both language and technical) and officially begin my "project" on May 5th 2010. My ending date will be May 5th 2012, unless I opt to extend, which I don't have to think about for a very long time.

I will posted instructions for letter-writing and other methods of communicating with me in Africa as I discover them.

For those of you reading this in Durango, I've only got 2 months left to hang out! So call me if you want to see me before I skip town. For the rest, I hope that you enjoy your New Year's festivities tonight, as well as the next two years.