COS conference consisted of meeting back up with the remaining volunteers from our original batch. We came over with 69 eager trainees and are now at a nifty fifty. It was kind of sad to miss the friends that you've come to make and who had already returned, but good to be able to see those who were still around.
The grand finale of COS featured an Ukay Ukay prom. I guess in America that would be comparable to a Goodwill Oscars. It was major fun picking out outfits that you can find at the ukay ukays. They pile up thousands of pounds of donated clothing from around the world onto tables, and let you sift through until you hit the motherload. My inspiratin was Deb from the movie Napolean Dynamite. Fortunately for me, my hair can naturally do an 880's poodle perm, so it wasn't THAT big of a challenge... for once I'm thankful for my afro tendencies. It was fun, and WOW, there are some awesome ukay ukay possibilities out there!
But for more on what COS conference was like, it was by far it was the most optimistic meeting we've had. In all of our trainings thus far, we had focused on how to overcome challenges we face at site, but this time it was a "We Did It!" RPCVs discussed what it's like to readjust to American culture. I apologize now if I freak out on you after I get back. They told stories of people balling at seeing wasted water, the price of brandname underwear, or flipping out on people who demanded 'skinless, boneless, white chicken.' I don't know, we'll see how it goes I guess.
And then we started to talk about successes we have had at site and really begin to focus on what the future holds for us. And that folks, is where the real scariness begins.WHAT AM I SUPPOSED TO DO NOW?!
EEEKS. I got some ideas. They involve graduate school hopefully, or if that doesn't pan out then working as a teacher at an elementary school. I'm going to work hard to get my Masters of Education in Literacy. The literacy degree is a result of my time in the Philippines. I've felt since the beginning that I could help my students so much more if I knew more about the subject. I feel like I wasn't the best teacher I could have been, and I think a degree in literacy will help any students I have in the future, regardless of where I end up teaching.
Who knows what will really happen, or where I'll end up in a year, but I'm starting to brainstorm and look at all the possibilities. It's just that there are so many possibilities!