Moni! This means "Hello!" in Chichewa, which is the main language in Malawi.
As you most of you know, I'm going to Malawi, Africa for a month! There are 10 students from Virginia Tech including myself (all girls, of course) and our professor, Dr. Kelly. Other students and professors from Radford and I believe, Appalachian State will be joining us as well.
I leave from Dulles airport on the morning of June 12, 2011. Our plane will first fly into Rome to refuel. Unfortunately, we don't even exit the plane! Our next nine hour leg, takes us to Ethiopia. We transfer planes and we finally land in Lilongwe, which is the capital of Malawi. This is about 24 hours of travel!! HELP! There has been making jokes about this travel experience so far because everyone knows I'm a spaz in the air. I feel bad for the new folks I'm traveling with. But, I'm going to get drugs so no worries! :)
While I'm in Malawi, I will mostly be working in a school with young children. My teaching partner is Katlin. She goes to VT with me and I met her this year in my classes! I'm really excited to be working with her! She is awesome and has such great energy! We are not sure what grade we will be teaching yet, but personally I'm hoping for 4th or 5th! I'm anxious to share my knowledge with them and enhance their understanding of the world beyond their village. I was so lucky that Sister Pat Spingler and the girls of Villa Maria held a school supplies drive on behalf of my soon to be students in Malawi! I am so thankful for their donations and I know it's going to improve our classroom experience!
I have a little more time to get everything together but I can't wait to get there. Sure, I'm nervous but I know this is going to be a wonderful, humbling and life changing experience! My friend Lauren who went last year gave me tons of advice but the one thing she said was, "Have the attitude to do everything." I wrote this down to remind myself to try new things (while being safe, don't worry people) and really enjoy this culture because I may never have this chance again!
Please send prayers and thoughts my way! Bill and Case are already so nervous and it hasn't even begun! If you all choose to follow me, I will be keeping you updated daily!
Thank you for the love and support,