There's Something about Mary

Stories and thoughts about my time as a Peace Corps volunteer in Moldova


Apparently I am a Princess….

So, as I said before, I am completely out numbered on the male to female volunteer ratio in my village.  Today I went out with four of the guys to grab a drink before going home.  We started talking to the table next to us, two older gentleman.  One spoke pretty good English, and is a retired teacher.

 About 10 minutes into the comversation, they all decided to do a shot of vodka.  Now shots scare me, I am no good at taking them, and refuse most times.  The idea of a vodka shot in a country so close to Russia really scared me, luckily they took my refusal very well, and told me “the princess” could get whatever she wanted.  I decided on a tea.  They brought out the shots and my tea, and for the next 30 or so minutes continued to call me princess.  Before we left they gave the other volunteer their numbers incase we needed anything.  It was rather flattering, I just wish I had gotten a picture.

Have a great night, and a happy 4th of July in the states!


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So I really enjoy playing Frisbee even though, 90% of the time I cant get the Frisbee to go where I want it to.  I thought it sounded like a great thing to bring with me, so as I was doing my last minute shopping/wandering through Target I bought one to bring with me.  One of the other guys in my group also brought one, and he carries it with him everyday to class, on our lunch breaks we usually play until our next session is about to start.  Most of the people in Moldova have never seen a Frisbee before, so sometimes they stare and look at us funny trying to figure out exactly what we are doing.

The Peace Corps has three main goals that they repeat all the time, kind of a big deal I am thinking ;).  The second is “to promote a better understanding of Americans among the people with whom Volunteers serve.” I found an excellent way to do this with my Frisbee, and my host sister.  My host sister is 16, and most girls around her age in Moldova don’t really seem to participate in sports.  Her and her friends played basketball in school, but now that school is out for the summer it is the boys who play at the soccer field, never the girls.  They saw us playing Frisbee and wanted to play too, so one night I brought out my Frisbee and I showed her and her 2 friends how to play.  We threw the Frisbee around for several hours, until it was too dark to see it.  Eventually a couple of boys in their class joined us too.  (Also pretty rare to find the boys and girls hanging out with each other if they are not dating).

The youth boys have recently started playing with us too when they are around the school at lunchtime.

My host sister

Overall the Frisbee was a success!


My Village

I have officially completed 2 weeks of training!  Six more to go before they let me go off on my own….scary!  So for training all 54 new Peace Corps trainees, they split us up into seven different villages located outside Chisinau, the capital city of Moldova.  My village is Ciorescu, located northeast, about an hour bus ride to the Peace Corps headquarters.  We go to Chisinau once a week, on a very crowded bus that stops at every stop, but it is usually a fun people watching experience.  In my village there are eight other Agribusiness and Rural Development (ARBD) volunteers.  seven males and one other female.  We take language classes together six days a week and are also assigned projects from the ARBD manager.

Last week we had a project to make a local community map (harta).  We all knew the main features of the town, main road, school. market (magazine), bar and soccer (futbol) field.  But to figure out the rest of the town we walked to each persons host (gazda) house/apartment (bloc).  It was a beautiful day, the walk might have been more pleasant had it been 10 degrees cooler, but we all made it through and stopped to get a beer at the end (which is actually made in Chisinau). Here are a few pictures:

Our school where langauge classes are held

Part of the ARBDs

A well, they are all over, most people in our village have their own water source now though

The entrance to my village

And lots of pretty flowers and vegetables gardens (picture of those to come later)

Along with many wells, there are many crosses

A house being built






5 things I have learned so far in Moldova

I have been in Moldova for a week now….quick post about what I have learned/observed

  • 1) House wine is taken in shot form, not usually sipped slowly in a glass.
  • 2) I have drank more tea (ceai) in the past week then I have all my life.
  • 3) Eu sunt Mary. (I am Mary)
  • 4) The Moldovan country side is beautiful, very green and the stereotypical rolling hills.
  • 5) Weird things remind me of friends and family in the states.

Overall this last week has been very enjoyable with lots learning and new experiences.

Pictures to come soon!



So, I am new at the whole blog writing thing, but in case you all were wondering I made it to Philadelphia with no problem and I officially check in as a volunteer in about 30 minutes!  Have a great Monday, I know I will.