Being halfway through something with such a definitive start and end brings you into a state of acute self awareness.
Take a century for example. Fifty years into one we realize that we probably won’t even make it another fifty, which prompts a mid-life crisis. We ask ourselves, ‘What am I doing here?’. And wether ‘here’ is Earth or the Peace Corps, the answer usually requires taking a step back from every day life to remember what’s important.
Mid-service conference is a time when Peace Corps brings our group together in the hopes of alleviating the mid-service crises. The first two days of sessions were many reminders about safety, policies, and HIV stats. The powerpoints were mostly repeats from Pre-Service Training, making them even more dull than they were the first time. The presentation days were spent at Greiters, an outdated conference center with a beautiful mountain view.
Mid-Service Part 1: Greiters
After two days of mid-service presentations, we got a consolation prize from the U.S. ambassador. He invited us to his home to trade good American beer like Dogfish Head IPA for our stories from the field. Did you know ambassadors get to choose American art for their houses while they’re abroad? Living artists only.
The rest of the week was more relaxed while we got medical check-ups. We had a lot of time to sit and chat with our fellow PCVs (Peace Corps Volunteers) over yummy food. Everybody has begun to make plans for next year, and we all dreamed of how we would run the Peace Corps differently if we were in charge.
Mid-Service Part 2: Windhoek
The time is going in spurts of fast and slow, but making it halfway through is evidence that one day, it will all be over.