The time has come…

I leave early tomorrow morning.   I’m thrilled to be embarking on this journey, but sadness about saying goodbye to loved ones caught up with me tonight.  I was packing my carry-on bag and feeling a bit down until I glimpsed a poster about child soldiers (in Uganda) that my friend Danielle had given me (Danielle had made it for a school project).  I felt sad because I have to bid (a temporary) farewell to family members and friends who possess extraordinary qualities and talents, who have shared valuable experience with me, who exchange love with me.  Everyone deserves that.  Everyone deserves to be valued, to share enlightening experiences with others, to give and receive love.  And it’s one thing to conjure up such a statement and another thing to enact it.  This is my chance to enact it.  I will take advantage of this chance, starting tomorrow.  I want to extend a heartfelt thank you to my friends and family whose love, humor, intelligence, and support have enhanced my life and helped me to [I LOVE U MARIA!] ————> (My little brother Jack wrote that!!) make the choice to join the PC, a choice I am proud of.  You are great people and I will continue to think of you often and send you love and GOOD VIBES.  Ugh, thank you.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM!!! I LOVE YOU SO MUCH!!  THANK YOU FOR HELPING ME BECOME ME!  I HOPE I CAN BEGIN TO HELP OTHERS AS YOU’VE HELPED ME.

Now – a good song:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E22HprMQN8M

<———–>  DO GOOD BE WELL LIVE IT UP AND LET GO <————–>

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Quick Update

Awesome song: The Ruminant Band by Fruit Bats

How’s it going? Yesterday I received my PC staging information and travel itinerary. On July 1st – which happens to be my mother’s birthday – I fly to Philadelphia for a quick jam sesh AKA a brief orientation. July 2nd we take a bus to NY, then a plane to Amsterdam, then another plane to Nairobi, then another plane to Lilongwe (the capital of Malawi in/near which training will occur). How wild is that?

So now I try my best to prepare and pack. My room looks like a camp site exploded. A film of hiking gear and bags and solar chargers and headlamps and books and papers coats the floor. I feel kind of guilty about buying and owning so much stuff, but I know every item I bring to Malawi will be useful – there is not enough packing room for it to be otherwise.  Oh – MAIL:

Maria Genovese, PCT
Peace Corps
P.O. Box 208
Lilongwe, Malawi

Mail takes 2-3 weeks to arrive in Malawi.  Please write “Air Mail” and “Par Avion” on the envelope.  Packages take 6-9 weeks to arrive.  Please write!!  It’ll be a joy to get your letters.

Nice.  So I’m pumped!  A little nervous too.  I’m really going to miss my my fantastic friends and family.  I like to think of us all as expanding into the universe rather than leaving each other.

Good times.

Posted in Jam Sesh | 6 Comments

What I Mean by “Assignment of Meaning”

**I tried/failed to not be a little too intense in this post.  I’ll try not to let it happen again.**

Hey. Ok, so:

1. I am joining the Peace Corps. My assignment is to spend 27 months teaching secondary English in Malawi. I consider this assignment to be very meaningful…

2. As humans, we engage in the perpetual struggle to assign meaning to things – the right things. We perceive, interpret, and judge information. We decide; choice is simultaneously a liberating privilege and an unavoidable, heavy responsibility. I choose to assign meaning to my Peace Corps service and the energies it perpetuates: freedom, justice, and love.  Peace Corps service is a way for me to actively live out those energies.

I love philosophy.  I love art. Creativity.  I love humanism, existentialism, absurdism – Sartre, De Beauvoir, CAMUS.  I love literature, drama, Theater of the Absurd – Beckett, Ionesco.   I love social justice.  Feminism.  I love freedom and equality and believe they are energies inherent in nature.   I believe in nonviolence.  I believe in constant and peaceful revolution of consciousness.  I believe in social democracy.  Choice.  I believe in the struggle.  I love nature.  The Earth.  Wildness.  I love hippies.  Vegetarianism.  I believe in free love.  I don’t believe in god but I do appreciate Buddhism.  Ram Dass; being here now.  I believe in liberation through critical thinking and I believe in education as liberation…

Albert Camus: brilliant AND good-looking

Eugene Ionesco: brilliant AND grandfatherishly cute

…And I’m moving to Malawi.  In a month.  July 1.  To keep thinking, to keep creating art, to keep exploring the Earth and its beauty – and to do these things in collaboration with a community of people who will undoubtedly teach me as much or more as I teach them.   And I’m stoked to reorient myself.  Stoked to see what happens to the philosophy, to the art.  Stoked to see what happens to me and to my community…

…I believe in openness.

Yup so I hope to use this blog to share insights, stories, inspirations, photos, etc. from my Peace Corps experience.

Good times…

P.S. I MUST give credit to Christina, my beautiful sister, who I will miss very very much (along with the rest of my wonderful family)  for taking the photo that is part of my blog’s heading.

Posted in Dramatic | 1 Comment