‘Twas the night before the week before 3 days before Christmas, when all through the house, not a body was stirring, not even a tarantula or a rat, except for Sarah and Josh and Rudie. The lights were a fading due to horrible electrical service, the water was not running, and all were a sweating with the incredible December Dominican heat. As fried chicken was eaten, dust was swept, and bucket baths were taken, all chimed in musical rhythm: “I can feel Christmas in the air”. Nine months have gone by and stories abound, it’s passed so quickly I feel like I’ve just broken ground. The people are lovely, lively, joyful and humble; learning how to be myself has sometimes made me stumble. The projects and plans may never go as they ought, but I shall never say that all is for naught. The daily gifts of abounding love, of devotion and of care have more than answered my wishes and my prayer. And now Christmas has come, a time to be thankful and humble, so let my words to you all be not a mumble but a rumble: I love you all, am thankful all you do; I am here and happy, growing and thriving thanks to you; a very merry Christmas to all, and to all I say adieu.
I know I am no poet, but it truly is incredible reflecting on the last 9 months. It passed by so quickly in its entirety, even though I remember times that seemed to drag on for ages. Some of the most amazing times have come through being able to share my experience with loved ones, so thanks to Stephanie, Jessica and John for making the trek. Also, thank you to my new Peace Corps family: Sarah, Masa, Rudie, Jeremy, Matt, Keeton, Eric, and all the Southies. You all rock, and I never expected to be able to create such a bond and close relationship with so many here. I guess it’s hard to be truly isolated in this small country. Thanks to my family and buds back home who continue to stay in touch and keep me grounded. Being here has made me appreciate our relationships and love even more. I miss you all like I miss funfetti cake. And a big thanks to my wonderful girlfriend, who sacrifices a countless amount of time, effort and energy just to encourage me and show me how loved I really am. You keep my head straight and help me to keep my focus on God. And to all who read my blog, thanks for listening to my attempt at honesty. It can be tough to portray sometimes, but I appreciate knowing that there are people reading, caring and praying about my experience. Thank you thank you thank you!!
Merry Christmas and may God bless you,
PS The red-bearded tall skinny Dominican Santa is coming to town. You better watch out…