So sorry for the blogging deficiency, I am working like a crazy lady on these finals. I might be able to pull off an "A" in my theories class, so I am really, really trying. In Abnormal Psych, I think I'll probably get a "B"...ahhh well, I guess this experience is worth the depleating GPA. The good news is, I will be ALL DONE today! I finished a 15-pager yesterday, and the one I am writing today only has to be 6-10 pages. I've spent my entire time in Viareggio in the internet cafe. It's good that I am here...less distractions (specifically, the hot, Italian distraction that starts with a "P") It's tough though, because Viareggio is a beautiful town--think, an Italian version of Hilton Head; expansive beaches, lots and lots of shopping, restaraunts, gelato (!!), people, dogs--you get the picture. And it is becoming more crowded by the day, as it is a popular vacation destination for Italians and many of them have much of August off for a holiday.
So, my plans have changed slightly again. Surprised? The itinerary is basically the same but with a slight modification. The new plan...Tiff and I are meeting Paolo in Florence on the 28th (we are going on the 27th) and will spend 3 nights there, so Tiff gets to meet and hang out with him for a bit. I have to get a second opinion of this guy...maybe she can pull me back to the ground from the cloud I've been floating on. (But I have a feeling she'll be smitten too). He's really good--he called HER the other day just to say hello, he said "I've been talking to Maggie online all day, and felt bad that I haven't said ciao to you today"...Talk about earning some major brownie points. See? He's knows what to do, he's Italian. Watch out, mom...
Anyway, back to the schedule. Paolo and I fly to Casablanca from Rome on the 31st. We spend 2 nights in Casablanca, then go to a small coastal town in northern Morocco called Asilah...its going to be hosting a big international arts festival while we are there...should be cool. We will be there for 5 nights, and will probably spend a night in Tangier before we take the ferry over to Spain. We are planning on a few days in Valencia, then heading to Barcelona. We will stay with a friend of his in Barcelona.
On August 16th, I fly to Accra, Ghana. By myself.
No worries, though- I am soooo excited....I have found a volunteer program based out of the UK where I will be working at a refugee camp in Ghana counseling children with HIV/AIDS. They will pick me up at the airport, provide me with housing and all of my meals, give me an introduciton to Ghana, and take me back to the airport on Sept 4th. Here is the link to their site:
It is a very reputable organization, I will be with other volunteers from all over the world, and hopefully it will be good experience for the new career I am pursuing. I have been talking about doing something like this in Africa for a while now, so the fact that I've found this organization and I can set up all of the details in such short notice tells me that this was meant to happen. I'm not sure what I want to do with my degree when I graduate, but working for an organization like this is definitely on the list, so this will give me a real taste of what it is like.
Tiffany is no longer keen on going to Africa, but I am determined...and I've learned something about myself on this trip...when I set my mind on something (like having a "travel buddy" in Rome) I will do everything in my power to make it happen :)
I also booked my ticket from New Jersey to Columbus on September 9th. I can't believe it. I can't believe the end is in sight. I can't think about it yet. What am I gonna do when I return to reality?!?! (Literally--I have NO IDEA what my next steps will be).
That will be a blog all of it's own. Written from Columbus after I have had time to process the last 4 months...all I know thus far, is that I would not trade a second of this experience for anything. And I still have 6 weeks left, so aside from booking the ticket and this small paragraph, it is getting no more thought. Things will work out as they should. They always do...