Welcome to October. While you guys are out there welcoming the arrival of fall, I'm here welcoming the arrival of an absolutely terrifying point: the last normal month.
October is the last normal month I'll have here, and I've been aware of it for a while. It will be a busy month -- but that's normal -- with a volunteer bonding trip to Earth Lodge outside of Antigua, a 3-day volunteer workshop to refine and reflect on the program, more proyectos familiares, a Kermes, the end of the school year, and graduation.
In November, I'll be traveling for 3 of the 4 weeks (Home Correspondent workshop in Nicaragua, then 2 weeks of vacation with Sam...we're thinking Honduras' Bay Islands and then Thanksgiving at the mansion in Pana with Cheryl!), and the week in between will be an insanely hectic but insanely fun celebration of NPH Guatemala's Aniversario -- arguably the biggest event of the year.
December means no more 9-5 office job, but it also means the hardest work I will have done all year. For a little over three weeks, all volunteers stop their day-to-day jobs and work as tios and tias in the section taking care of the kids who don't go home to families for the Christmas season. All I can say is: get ready.
And then it's January. January is a month of ringing in the New Year, recovering from December's tia duty, seeing a new set of volunteers come in, training them to take over our jobs, dying inside while we watch them take over our sections of kids, packing, and saying goodbyes. My 13-month commitment at NPH Guatemala officially ends on January 21.
Good lord, I'm exhausted just writing about what a whirlwind these next few months are going to be. Some moments I feel like I still have forever left here, but then I go and do something like realize I only have 4 more regular Monday mornings as the Home Correspondent, and I completely freak myself out.
So, if you thought these past 9 months had been an adventure, you ain't seen nothin' yet. Things are about to get really crazy around here. Hope you (and I) can keep up. :)