I'm bursting with ideas for this village and not a single one will work.
It's a slow process integrating into a foreign community where no one can speak to you and no one understands your mission. Unfortunately, I've had to learn this the hard way over the past few months. Although we were told that the first six months of service would be a difficult time of adjustment I must not have thought that the 45 years of Peace Corps procedure applied to me. Finally, my project manager came to visit and she very carefully explained (for the 100th time) why I was getting so frustrated: "You're not being patient enough."
She asked me, "if I moved into a small town in Ohio and knocked on a stranger's door and told them: 'Hello! I'm here to change the way you do things in America!' What do you think would happen? They'd call the police, right?"
She's right, I can't expect the villagers to adopt my ideas, want to change, or even want to meet me the very moment I come here. It's not a fair expectation. I guess that's why they give us 2 years to serve.
So now I'm doing some personal PR. I've introduced myself and explained my purpose for coming in all of the classes and at the parent teacher meetings, they published an interview with me in the school newspaper and they are letting me give a seminar on Monday at the Youth Action Club meeting. I am going to parties, events and a wedding tomorrow all with the intention to let people know who I am.
My program manager explained: "You come here with your own mission and the PC mission in your mind, but what about the people who have lived here their whole lives? Don't you think that they have personal thoughts about how things should be? Traditions? Methods of their own that they think work just fine?" Kitch Kitch (little by little) things will come together....I pray...
Introducing Emelyn Ruth Bornstein
2 years ago