Rae Roams: Ngwe Saung

Last week was one of Myanmar’s biggest holidays: Thadyingut! More on that here. Thadingyut means the end of rainy season, lots of festive lights, and a week off of school. As my close-of-service date approaches, so does a three-month restriction on my ability to travel. I decided to take advantage of that time and go…

The Week in Tarot Cards

For the past two weeks, I’ve been spending time at another volunteer’s site to help with small summer camp they organized. In the few weeks left leading up to the end of my service, these moments have been really precious. Since I was primarily with people I will be travelling with, I felt that much…

Jaun Journals #4: Sacrifice

Peace Corps volunteers are no stranger to sacrifice…and that’s what this blog is about, but I don’t mean the bordering-on-white-savior reasons that are cited in a lot of places. The idea of complicity in Peace Corps’ role in the white-savior debate is complex in its own way – maybe a conversation for a different time…

Rae Roams: Shan State

The first night of the hike, my group and I – consisting of a group of volunteers and a few other travelers – settled into the Shan village we would be staying at for the night, a welcome sight after that first day of non-stop, uphill trekking. After hiking just over thirteen miles up the…

The One Where My Counterpart Gets Married……

It only seems right to follow up a blog all about the love in North Okkala with the event that inspired it…a wedding! Over the weekend, I was lucky enough to share a wedding with a few fellow volunteers, community members, other teachers, and my counterpart. The first part of deciding when a good time…

Jaun Journals #3: What’s Love Got to Do With It?

There’s a lot of love in the air in North Okkala lately. One of my counterparts had a birthday this week, another one is getting married, and there seem to be a few extra smiles from everyone in general this week. (Separate post about the engagement and wedding coming soon!!!) I have been reflecting the…

Jaun Journals #2: Challenges of Teaching in Myanmar

After a year and a half in country, many of the challenges I faced in the beginning of my service have been solved…or at least I have found ways to cope with them. Many of the things that I have previously written about included topics like mental health, housing, travel, and a little about the…

Jaun Journals #1: What Routine?

There is no foolproof formula for teaching. Especially in Myanmar. Additionally, there’s not a lot of room for routine. There are a few legit – as well as some pretty ridiculous – reasons teachers miss a class or lesson planning session, throwing off an entire day of lessons sometimes.  They are constantly called away by…