I’m Sydney. I’m an M-28 Health Education Volunteer! Here is a brief introduction about myself and why I chose to join the Peace Corps.
I’m from Monroe, Georgia it is a small town located between Atlanta and Athens. I have a great sense of humor. I’m a people person. I love life. I grew up with a close family of a mom, a dad and a big brother. I love to play golf with my family. I have three degrees, one associate’s and two bachelors. My associate’s degree is in Sport’s Management from Andrew College a small college in South Georgia. I was on a ladies golf scholarship at Andrew College. I got my two Bachelor degrees in Health and Physical Education and Exercise Science and Wellness from Georgia Southwestern State University. After I graduated from Georgia Southwestern State University I chose to join the Peace Corps for a couple reasons. First, I wanted to gain international experiences to help myself to become a more diverse person and learn a new culture. Second, I wanted to share and expand my knowledge to others.
2. What’s your favorite thing about Moldova?
My favorite thing about Moldova is that Moldovans give you the best hospitality and treat you as their own.
3. What’s your least favorite thing about Moldova?
My least favorite thing about Moldova is the transportation system, especially the ruteria schedule. With this being said you have to plan in an advance a day or two to travel around Moldova. I’m one of the luckier volunteers who have two types of transportation systems in and out of my village a train station and a ruteria. The ruteria and train schedules are very limited. I have only four times during the morning to the early afternoon to leave my village to go into my center, Falesti (8:20am, 11:10am, 12:45pm and 2:45pm).My return schedule to my village is only at 7:40am, 10:30am, 12:10pm and 2:10pm. I do have two direct ruteria’s that go into Chisinau one is at 5am and the other is at 2:00am and the return times are 10:45am and 7pm. But the only down fall to going into Chisinau and leaving Chisinau is that it’s an approximately a three hour ride.
4. A story or lesson from your service?
People all around the world learn something new every day. I have learned to adapt to the simple way of life in my village of Scumpia. In life fancy things and riches don’t define our happiness or who we are, when all you need are the basic essentials to live a wonderful and happy life. My home satisfies my basic daily needs and wants. I have adapted to only having the bare minimum – I have roof over my head at night, a place to lay my head down at night, a place to study and work, a place to bathe and a machine to wash clothes, a place to eat and cook and a place to use the bathroom. I do have a small room and my bathroom is outside away from the house but it’s the way of living simple.
5. What do you miss most about “home” wherever that may be?
1. Physical touch from my family members- I miss the hugs, kisses and cuddles.
2. Playing golf with family and friends
3. Having happy hour on the beach with my mom
4. Of course, fried chicken
5. A good beer!
6.Knowing what you know now, would you do it all over again?
What I know now about my service, would I do it all over again? Great question, Miss. Kate! As I begin to approach the end of my PC service in Moldova, I come to realize I have experienced a variety of emotions from high to low. I have felt happiness to mild depression. I have seen how my initial struggle learning Romanian (the native language of Moldova) effected my feelings of ability to communicate and I was lucky enough to have almost every sickness possible during my service from food poisoning (four times) to a head cold. I have seen my ideas applied and felt gratitude and I have seen my ideas interpreted as incorrect. Yes, some days I felt like giving up due to my continual health issues, the frustrations with work and language, but getting back to the question would I do this all over again? My answer is simply, yes! It was realizing I have the ability to learn and communicate in Romanian, be successful at work and continue to rebound from health issues that make me want to convey the truth that this experience has made me who I am today. With new lifelong friends, a village in Moldova that works hard to make themselves better educators because of me and a new understanding of a fascinating culture I am forever leaving Moldova feeling accomplished personally.
7. Quote or song or picture that sums up your service?
Stay positive and love life.