The following chronicles the dates and events that passed in my journey to join the Peace Corps, and some significant events that happened during my Peace Corps service in Armenia. My Peace Corps timeline is as follows:
January 21, 2010: Decided to join the Peace Corps, while in Las Vegas at Steve Pavlina’s Conscious Growth Workshop.
2/8/2010 8:49:00 AM EST: Submitted completed online application and health status review application. Asked three people to write references for me.
2/23/2010: Got an email from my assigned PC recruiter, with forms to fill out. Also she mailed me a packet w/ fingerprint card, etc. I was traveling at the time, and my mom had to overnight the packet to my couch-surfing hosts in Montana.
3/2/10: Sent out completed forms, after going to a detention facility in Bozeman, MT, to get my fingerprints taken.
3/6/2010: The last of my last of three references turned in their reference.
3/16/2010: Attended information session in Boulder, CO. Received sample interview questions from recruiter there.
3/17/2010: Phone interview, because my recruiter was in Michigan and I was in Colorado. Was asked to submit a third essay, get another reference, and work on my Spanish skills. Was asked if I would be prepared to leave in the beginning of September. I said yes.
3/25/2010: My fourth reference was submitted and I turned in my new essay.
4/6/2010: Received nomination for: Central/South America and the Caribbean. Was not made aware of the projected program leave date.
4/28/2010: Received medical and dental forms at my job in Alaska. I was on my way there to work for the summer.
4/30/2010: Doctor’s physical exam in Alaska. Dentist appointment for x-rays and “dental probing.”
Turned in completed doctor and dentist forms.
Various additional trips to the doctor and dentist to get vaccinations, x-rays of my teeth, and blood re-drawn. Bought a second pair of glasses, per Peace Corps request. First new pair in about 10 years.
8/7/2010: All four wisdom teeth taken out, at the request of the Peace Corps. Misery.
Finished the season in Alaska. No word from Peace Corps.
Moved to San Diego. Got an apartment, paying month-to-month rent. Waited.
Attended an info session in San Diego. Found out my program was scheduled to leave Feb. 2011. Was told that if I don’t hear from PC by January, to call them to see what was up.
Running out of money to live in San Diego. Thinking about looking for a job.
12/29/2010: Finally! Another phone interview. Verbal invitation extended for Eastern Europe, leaving May 2011, work to be in Information and Communications Technology.
1/3/2011: Received formal invitation in the mail for Armenia, leaving May 26, 2011. (This was later changed to June 1, 2011.)
1/6/2011: Formally accepted my invitation via email.
1/13/2011: Turned in passport and visa applications, aspiration letter, and updated resume.
Remainder of Winter
Hung out in San Diego. Played a lot of volleyball. Found some freelance work to get me by. Started researching Armenia. Read a lot of Peace Corps blogs. Created some flashcards to start studying the language. Gave up.
Moved home to Michigan, to spend my last month with my family. The day I arrived, they were gone to Florida.
A flurry of packing, parties, saying good-bye. Sold my car, gave away a lot of things. Last-minute studying of the language with the help of my sister.
6/1/2011: Left for staging in Philadelphia, PA.
6/4/2011: Arrived in Yerevan, Armenia.
Pre-service Training. Involved lots of language, culture, and safety & security sessions.
8/16/2011: Swore in as a Peace Corps Volunteer, A-19.
8/17/2011: Moved to permanent site.
Cold. Tried to stay warm. Failed.
5/01/2012: Moved out of host family’s house into an apartment of my own. Joy!
8/16/2013: Officially closed my service and completed my 27 months as a Peace Corps volunteer in Armenia. Traveled to Spain for a week as a post-vacation gift to myself.
8/25/2013: Arrived back on American soil and started the re-integration process.
11/4/2013: Got a new job, and started working at the Monterey Institute of International Studies in Monterey, California