Three weeks ago today, Paden and I rang the bell at the Peace Corps office in Chisinau, Moldova. Ringing the bell is a tradition in Peace Corps Moldova, for when Peace Corps volunteers complete their service. For me the day, the day we rang the bell was a rushed blur, of forms, paperwork and eventually ending with a goodbye dinner and lots of tears.
Traditionally volunteers give a small speech before they ring the bell, which Paden and I do, in the video below. I wish that I had prepared a speech or something to say, prior to the bell ringing, but I found myself blocked whenever I tried to write something. I couldn’t then or even now, adequately put into words what my time in Moldova or leaving meant or means to me.
I plan over the next months, as I have more time to process and reflect on leaving and my time in Moldova, to write more about Moldova and my journey during my time there.
Ringing the bell, Paden and I choose to wear gifts from our host family in Balti and also from my office (CASMED), the traditional Moldovan shirt and bow tie we’re wearing in the video are these gifts.