3 Smiles and a Struggle: Visiting Mapinhane, Halloween with the Neighbors, Our First Portuguese Test, and Our Homestay

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The last week, in general, was pretty much smiles. Our group was sent to all corners of the country to visit currently serving volunteers and see what the day to day of a Peace Corps Volunteer looks like. Alex got to fly to Manica province and visit a mountainous site, and I got to take a 12 hour bus ride to northern Inhambane. The payoff, though, was that I got to spend a day in beautiful Vilanculos, relaxing by the Indian Ocean. I then visited the small town of Mapinhane for 4 days. The awesome PCV’s here made our visit by sharing so many personal stories of life in Moz, cooking us delicious food (cinnamon rolls!), and letting us observe their classes and follow them around town. I loved Mapinhane and Vilanculos, and it was such a welcome break from the rigorous schedule of training.

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The three trainees that visited Mapinhane.

The three trainees that visited Mapinhane, walking in Mapinhane.

The second smile was celebrating Halloween in Moz. I will admit that I wasn’t in the best mood yesterday (blame PMS, malaria meds, and sleep deprivation from the 14 hour return bus ride on Thursday), but we still had a good time. We brought two of our neighbor gals to a trick or treat street at our Peace Corps science training hub. Between all the volunteers, we had about 70 kids there eatin candy, bobbing for apples, dancing, and coloring.

Happy Halloween from Winnie and Lulu, the cats!

Happy Halloween from Winnie and Lulu, the cats!

Alex and me in our first-ever couple's costume. The brand of peanut butter here is 'Black Cat,' so I dressed up as a black cat and he dressed up as a jar of peanut butter. We were the same thing in different costumes :) It was a hit!

Alex and me in our first-ever couple’s costume. The brand of peanut butter here is ‘Black Cat,’ so I dressed up as a black cat and he dressed up as a jar of peanut butter. We were the same thing in different costumes 🙂 It was a hit!

The third smile this week was that both Alex and I passed our first language test at and above the level we needed by the end of training. Success! And with 4 weeks to spare 🙂

The struggle this week was returning to our homestay. While it is comforting and comfortable in some ways, it was hard to be out and about in Moz cooking, relaxing, and getting a taste of life at site and then have to return to the schedule of training and the less-free environment of living in someone else’s house. We are settling back in here in Namaacha, with about 3 and a half weeks of training left!

An orange pumpkin sunset on Halloween in Namaacha.

An orange pumpkin sunset on Halloween in Namaacha.

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2 responses »

  1. Mapinhane looks beautiful! Congrats on the language test, you are both doing awesome. We are proud of you and send our best from FVE! Good luck making it through the next 3.5 weeks. Happy Halloween!

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