Today was another busy day at staging (meeting/cultural training). We did more icebreaking activities and more discussions. We discussed on gender roles, observing a made up ritual, and American and Albanian gender roles. The most intensive topic I thought was the “gender roles” because a lot of the trainees were outspoken and deep. I was impressed with their strong knowledge about it and was deeply intellectual. I learned a lot!
The Peace Corps Director, Carrie Hessler-Radelet, flew from Washington DC to speak with us. It was a great and rare opportunity for her to come speak at staging. We had lunch at the meeting room and ate pizza. After lunch, she made a really inspiring and powerful speech. Her personal stories as a Peace Corps Volunteer were great and touching. I nearly teared myself because it was a wonderful feeling and it made me feel hopeful about my service, no matter how difficult it will be. She worked in Public Health sector, served in Samoa, helped several African presidents to run their country effectively, and other wonderful things. After the speech, everyone took a group picture with her. Our photographer took a few pictures of trainees holding up a sign “I joined the Peace Corps to…” with their reason. At the end of staging, everyone was given a little Peace Corps pin and a few trainees were chosen to be interviewed.
After staging, there were a lot of trainees met up at the lobby to walk to see the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall. It was awesome and the history behind it was powerful.
This bell may seem like a normal bell, but it has a great powerful history behind it…go look it up.
I unfortunately did not have enough time to check out Reading Market.
After that, I had Chinese food in Chinatown. My thoughts on Chinatown was smaller and not impressive, compare to the Chinatown in NYC or San Francisco.
I can’t believe that this will be my last night in the states and my last few moments. ::takes deep breath::