My name is Omar, or at least in Morocco it was.
I am an RPCV (Belize ’02-’04) that swore I would never again do Peace Corps service. Don’t get me wrong; I enjoyed my service and the people I worked with, I (almost always) loved my job, it made me who I am and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. But I also never wanted to repeat the experience. Then I met my wife. Before her, I had not considered Peace Corps service with a partner, as a couple. That’s all it took to convince me and that led to she and I becoming PCVs in Africa.
Our application process (it’s different for everyone) lasted about 2 years. We were as patient as we could be (most of the time). Finally we received our invitations to serve in Kenya. As we prepared for this adventure we wondered which part of Kenya we would be placed in. We were excited about learning Swahili. We watched this video. A lot.
We were days away from quitting our jobs when we received another email. We weren’t going to Kenya. Due to the security situation, the PC program in Kenya was suspended. So began the next waiting game for us: if not Kenya, where would we actually end up? Several weeks later we learned that our destination would be Morocco. A country I had visited once, years ago, on a day trip from Spain. Having spent only a few hours in Tangiers, it has always been a place I wanted to explore more of. Now I would have the opportunity to do that, beside my fantastic wife.
We lived in Sidi Slimane, Morocco for around 2 years for our Peace Corps service. It was a challenging and rewarding time. We made some great friends, saw some amazing sights, and experienced things we will never forget. Then we returned to America… for 4 weeks. In that four weeks we frequently longed to be outside of America once again. For half of that time we went camping in Yellowstone Park and the Grand Tetons. America has beautiful places, but we realized that it was not yet time for us to live within it again.
So we searched the internet for further volunteer opportunities and discovered several that interested us through the site workaway.info (check it out, there’s some really interesting opportunities!). In this manner we ended up flying to Hanoi, Vietnam, to teach Englsih for 6 weeks. After a few weeks of traveling we moved on to work at-resort in Southern Cambodia for a month. Then we moved on to Myanmar where we are teaching English for 2 months.
We’ll travel through more of Myanmar after our teaching job is finished, but beyond that we’re still unsure. Maybe back to America? Maybe more travel… to Indonesia? or India? Possibly another workaway experience in Colombia? Check back in to see where life takes us.