“The journey is the treasure.”

The rain was the first thing I heard when I woke up. It was pounding the window. I could also hear the wind, and from my window, I could see the top tree branches flying left and right. The house was cold. I had left my bedroom window open so my room felt damp and chilly. Henry wanted out at 8 so out he went into the rain. I went back to bed, and when he came back inside, Henry joined me. His fur was all wet. We both slept another hour. Given my druthers, I would have stayed snuggled under the covers, but Henry had a different idea. He started jumping and playing on the bed. I gave up and got out of bed. Henry got his breakfast, the cat got her treats and I got my coffee.

My house is dark. Henry is chewing on one of his toys. I think the cat is by the water dish waiting to meow when I walk by, her reminder to me to change the water. I’m just sitting here thinking and writing. The rain seems to make us all a bit logy.

I cleaned a basket yesterday, one of three under the table here in the den. It had clumps and more clumps of dust. It had an unopened calendar from 2015. I also found a manila envelope filled with return address labels. Another envelope had a few recipes and a third had nothing. A few books were in the basket, books I haven’t read. My Peace Corps mug book was there. It has pictures and short bios for every volunteer in my training group. We all look so young. The bio gives my age, 21, and my address. It notes I am a graduate of Merrimack College and majored in English and minored in education. During the summers, I worked in the post office. That seems a bit boring especially given the varied experiences of my fellow trainees. It also says in my free time I enjoy softball. That makes me laugh. I hadn’t played softball since high school.

I thumbed through all the pages and memories flooded back, memories of trainees who left during training, those people I never got to know, memories of friends who stayed and, sadly, a memory of one who died in Ghana.

None of us in that mug book knew what was waiting for us. We didn’t know we were about to embark together on the most remarkable journey. I haven’t seen many of the people in that book, but I still have so much affection for them, so many memories of them. I will always be thankful for them, Peace Corps and most especially for Ghana.

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10 Comments on ““The journey is the treasure.””

  1. olof1 Says:

    It has finally cooled down some here and tomorrow will feel almost cold but I don’t mind. No rain predicted until perhaps next week, good that keeps the grass low 🙂 🙂

    Have a great day!

    Christer.

    • katry Says:

      Christer,
      It is still raining. Tomorrow will also be rainy and it will be cold. The rest of the week doesn’t look good either.

      Have a nice cool day!

  2. William Sandford Says:

    The house closes on Thursday. It’s been a very long journey.
    Those years in Ghana were some of the best years of our lives. People who never had the experience can’t understand what it meant to us. It’s something that can never be forgotten.

    • katry Says:

      Bill,
      They were definitely some of the best years of our lives. I learned so much about another country, its wonderful people and about myself.

      You’re right about people not understanding the experience. I always think how wonderful it was we chose the Peace Corps. We chose an experience about which we knew nothing, and we got everything.

  3. William Sandford Says:

    I was in Peterborough this morning installing grab bars in a client’s bathroom, and picked up Marty to drive him to dialysis. When I arrived at his apartment, he says “I need money from the ATM at CVS. I need two prescriptions picked up there. I need Lidocaine. I need Tylenol PM.” 😟. We were only 15 minutes for dialysis.

    • katry Says:

      Bill,
      Good think Marty has his own car service, his own Uber, and such a prompt one at that!

  4. William Sandford Says:

    We were only 15 minutes late.

  5. Bob Says:

    This morning we had some heavy rain which was a cool surprise. There’s a chance of rain tomorrow morning. Then the next heatwave will start again.

    The Peace Corps was one of this country’s finest ideas and it’s participants were our best ambassadors. Too bad the current resident of 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. can’t or won’t resume that great program instead of building walls and separating families. 🙁

    • katry Says:

      Bob,
      It rained all day here and some of it was quite heavy rain. We’re going to have weather in the 50′ for most of the week and a couple of days of rain.

      Peace Corps is still going strong, but it needs a bigger budget. There is a list of countries hoping to have volunteers, but the program hasn’t the money, and its budget hasn’t increased.

      I’ve always said that Peace Corps is the best bang for the buck. It is grass roots with volunteers living at the same levels as their host countries’ counterparts do. That means many still have no electricity or running water. My students remembered me forty years after I had last seen them. I was humbled by their memories.


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