24 June 2007

make a plan to love me.

It's final. I'm going to Ethiopia. I leave October 5 and will serve until the end of November 2009, dates subject to change depending on the length of training. I'll be part of a group of 40 Community HIV/AIDS Advisors spread around the country - the first group of PC volunteers since the 1999 Eritrea/Ethiopia war made PC recall everyone. According to my assignment, running water and electricity are possible, but not likely, in my living conditions. I'll be working with a health center or NGO in a small town or village community. I'll have a more detailed update on my service and Ethiopia itself once I get a chance to sit down and work through all the paperwork. But the point is, after a nine-month application process, it's finally here!

While not counting down the days until I'd be at work and hence able to check my mail (an odd sensation, I must admit), Candace and I have gone on a MacGyver-esque cooking kick. Armed only with a finicky gas stove, half-cup measuring cup, and a (Celsius) toaster oven, we have produced peanut butter-oatmeal-chocolate chip cookies, potato chips, popcorn, and banana bread, as well as a variety of "real food" dinners. Next up is key lime pie (ingredients courtesy of Fleming's parents...at Christmas), watermelon sorbet, zucchini bread, and zucchini fritters. I bought three pounds of zucchini on the side of the Desert Highway for less than a dollar. If you have other recipes calling for zucchini, send them my way. Eggs, too - due to a shopping miscommunication, we have approximately 50 eggs in our refrigerator. We're also in the market for sauce recipes to liven up our lives. Candace has a lot of free time on the internet at work and I have a lot of free time at home during the day. Paula Dean makes great recipes, just so you know. I've become an old woman. Recipe swapping. Such is life. I live "between Iraq and a hard place" and I'm moving to Ethiopia, so at least I'm not bored.

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