Falling in Love with DC

My Cubicle!

I really slacked off on blogging this summer… I’ll try to catch you up on all the incredible things I’ve been doing and experiencing.
First of all I need to say… I LOVE DC … No but seriously, I love this city and would move here in a heartbeat.  Well, as long as I can travel to Africa once in a while.
Sitting at lunch with my co-workers the other day I had one of those moments when you realize that you’re exactly where you belong and everything seems a little clearer.  I’ve always had trouble living in the moment and am constantly focusing on the future.  Now I can honestly say that I am completely happy and satisfied with the present, which is a wonderful feeling.
Of course, a big part of this is the fact that I’m really enjoying my internship at the Peace Corps.  I don’t feel like a lowly intern, but a real part of the team.  My input is asked for and valued and I am included in everything that my department does.  While most of the work I am doing is data entry, I am working on an exciting project.  As a reminder, I am working with World Wise Schools which creates resources for teachers to help students become culturally competent.  I’ve been asked to create an informational video about what the peace corps does geared towards third graders.  WWS has programs that allow classes to correspond with current volunteers and have returned volunteers come visit them.  For this reason, it is important for the students to understand exactly what the peace corps is.  While I probably won’t be able to see the finished product, I’ll at least get to put everything together for it.  Part of the video will include interviews with returned volunteers which I’ll get to conduct, so that will be exciting.
The other reason I love my internship is that half the time I’m not even working (Although I probably shouldn’t spread that around too much).  Thursday myself and the other interns were invited to have lunch with the director of our office.  We heard his incredible life story and picked his brain about grad school, getting a job and the inner workings of the peace corps.  Wednesday was an “all hands meeting” at which Director Aaron Williams, who was appointed directly by Obama, and other senior staff talked about the progress of the Peace Corps and the future of the organization.  Congress asked them to conduct an extensive assessment last year so this meeting was mainly an update on the outcomes of that assessment.  It really helped me see the bigger context of what I am doing and was great just to hear whats happening in the different departments.
In addition to this, on Monday there was a “coffee talk” with three returned volunteers which was just a casual conversation about their service.  Throughout the talk all I could think about was how badly I want to join the Peace Corps.  In fact, that desire is being confirmed every day at work.
At some point I transitioned from tourist to regular DC professional, so I haven’t been site seeing in while.  I did check a couple more items off of the must see list though: walking around the memorials at night and the zoo.  I’ll try to write another post about those soon. (I promise!)

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