Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Keeping in touch with South Africa

While in service, some fellow PCVs and I always mused about why volunteers who left their posts in South Africa would still keep in touch with us remaining volunteers.  The general consensus is that they weren't really satisfied with life in the States, and still partially longed to be back in South Africa.  Those who were ready to leave the country and get back to life in the developed world found what they were looking for, and rarely, if ever, kept in touch with anyone who remained.

Now that I find myself "one of those" who has left the country, whether I like it or not, I am in the new category.

I always think it is neat when the friends I made kept in touch with me, whether they were PCVs, co-workers, high school pals, or something else.  So many times I received the, "oh, I meant to send you a letter but it's still on my desk" kind of response.   Sorry, but good intentions are only that, and they don't really count.  Actions are what matter most.  Receiving a piece of mail, e-mail update or facebook post from someone was especially welcomed while I was in service. 

Maybe I am still in a "transition period" or something, but I still feel quite connected to my fellow PCV friends in South Africa, and like to keep in touch; both PCV friends, and South African ones.  I enjoy reading blog posts, Facebook updates, occasional country news, and e-mails from my Country Director and other officers in the field.  Does that mean I am not fulfilled in my current life in the US of A?  Not in the least.  I am busy making birth plans, researching moving companies and expenses, planning trips to visit friends and family, spending quality time with my nephew and keeping up with household chores and exercise.  It's given me a new perspective, to be on the "other side of the fence."