Tim in Georgia

This is a blog to chronicle my experiences in the Republic of Georgia as a Peace Corps TEFL volunteer. *The views expressed herein are mine and are not necessarily those of the Peace Corps or the US Government.*

20 April 2006

Pilgrimage to PC Mecca

I went to Peace Corps headquarters in downtown DC yesterday with a group of three others from W&M for a nominee/invitee event. It was quite a production...Gaddi Vasquez, director of the Peace Corps, spoke, as well as an RPCV from the Kyrgyz Republic and the mother of a volunteer who she had just visited in Ecuador.

The speeches were great and heartfelt and all, but that wasn't really the important part of the trip. What really hit home for me was when all the invitees came to the front of the room and a microphone was passed around, with each invitee introducing themselves and saying which country they were going to. Of course I'd been discussing my placement in Georgia with friends and family, but something about the experience really drove it home for me. I was professing to a room full of strangers and near-strangers whom I had only met three hours before that I would be spending the next 27 months of my life in Georgia, teaching English. Something about it just made me think "wow, I'm really doing this." Maybe it was the formality of it all, with the microphone and the completely ambiguous "business-casual" attire everyone was sporting. Or maybe it was the fact that I didn't know any of them, and it was the first time I was telling my plans to strangers. But whatever the reason, it really made the whole process seem real and near to me.

So, I leave in 53 days. And I couldn't be more excited. I met all of the PC staff that I had been communicating with via email and telephone at the shindig last night, which was really nice. I also met another person (Emily) who will be in my Georgia group, so I will recognize at least one familiar face when we arrive for training in Philadelphia in under two months.

I have also made progress towards getting this dental business cleared up, hopefully it will be simple and not like the experiences Brooke, Virginia, and Audrie (the other people from W&M who drove up yesterday) are having with their medical stuff. But it's (mostly) outside my control, so que sera sera, I guess.


15 April 2006



I don't really have anything to say (yet), but I wanted to establish the address so I could include it in emails I am sending out to friends, family, etc. If you happen to have stumbled upon this site unwittingly (or if you did it wittingly but are forgetful), here are the basics:

This site will chronicle my experiences during Peace Corps service in the country of Georgia. I have three days of training starting June 12, 2006. Rumor has it this will take place in Philadelphia. On June 15 I leave for T'bilisi, Georgia, where I will engage in 2.5 months of language and culture training before assuming my post in an unknown (at least for now) town in Georgia. Once there, I will be teaching English as a foreign language to secondary-level students for two years before returning to the U.S.A. in late August, 2008. Plans from there are nebulous, but they include becoming undeservedly wealthy.

If facebook just isn't interesting anymore, here are some links about Georgia...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Georgia_%28country%29 - Wikipedia article about Georgia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Georgian_language - Georgian Language
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/PeaceCorpsGeorgia/ - PC - Georgia Yahoo! group (You need to join to see the good stuff, I think.)

I plan to augment this site with some emails (which may be personally tailored!). If you are not on the email list and would like to be, send an email to tpiergalski@gmail.com from an address you will have access to until August 2008.

I plan to update this site as developments warrant until June, when I will (hopefully) update it regularly. Also, as many posts as possible will be made in the font 'Georgia' to further enhance your vicarious experience.