Saturday, July 11, 2009


Zdraveytey again! I have a treat for you all today but first I’d like to begin with a little explanation of what I’m trying to do.

When anyone tells a story, there is a need to tell the events that surround the story. Usually this includes phrases such as, “So there was this time when I was at this place and…” or “Did ever mention that…” and these phrases are followed up by the a short hint of story and then the context. In general, context is good but sometimes it tends to be long-winded and completely irrelevant to the story. In fact the story can be summed up in about one or two lines. Take the entire Harry Potter series, for instance. As a summary, we can say “Harry and his friends go to school and kill the Dark Lord”. Obviously I’m not giving the entire series enough justice but the idea is there. Sometimes, though, one or two sentences are all you need to tell a really good story. The following lines are the experiences of me and a few of my friends taken in and placed into one or two sentences. Each is done in the 1st person and a few can be summed up by something said during the event. I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I have enjoyed collecting them. I’ve added a comment in parentheses to help you understand a couple of them. Let’s begin with mine:

1) I’ve stared down a chicken while squatting on a toilet.

2) I’ve received chocolate from a Mahmoud Achmandinejad lookalike

3) I’ve toasted to the death of communism.


I once watched my host dad shave his chest and belly in the living room while his son played on the ground in his shavings.


1) I quit smoking because a sixth grader lit up beside me.
2) My host brother wants to be me so much that he came to dinner with my toothbrush in his mouth.


I’ve ran for my life from packs of dogs - more than once.


1) I killed a chicken and ate some bees in the same day.
2) One dark night, I was led home by the hand by a six-year old girl.


I think my neighbor is the ghost of the lady who died across the hall.


I once received a love letter that said, “Jesse sexy. Kiss kiss. Sorry brothers.”


My host mom wouldn’t let me leave my house because my hair was wet and trapped me on my porch to dry my hair.


“My vagina doesn’t smell- I don’t need a douche” (the word pronounced like douche means ‘shower’)

Anna T:

My host mom invites boys over for dinner for me to marry. We argued for two hours over and it is still an issue.


At a school, I once pulled the squatter toilet flush lever too hard and all of my shit went all over the stall of the bathroom.


That’s all I have for now but I plan on collecting more and using them for another blog post in the future. To clarify, each of these stories came from the last 8-9 weeks that we’ve been here and I was only able to ask a small fraction of the 62 of us. I didn’t get a chance to ask a few. Some of the trainees couldn’t think of a story immediately. Some claimed that they had no stories at all. If any of these trainees are reading this blog, you have stories. I can assure you that you do. The easiest thing to do is to picture the things you have done in Bulgaria that you would never have done otherwise and please send them to me or tell me the next time we meet up.

This is the Peace Corps and it regrettably cannot be summarized into a sound bite.



  1. Admittedly, it's a little ironic that I spent several sentences to say I only wanted one sentence.

  2. I feel like you could make one of those tear-off calendars with quotes like this- a "Life in the Peace Corps" calendar, if something like that would ever sell...
    Anyway, sounds like you are having an interesting time- you don't even need alcohol!

  3. Just because you don't need alcohol does not mean that it does not enhance the experience. It actually makes the craziness easier to handle sometimes.

  4. My goodness. Collect these experience and capitalize on them. I see a book deal.

  5. these are fun. you should definitely collect more of them.

  6. '365 Days as a Peace Corpse in Bulgaria'

  7. This is my favorite post so far. I think your Harry Potter example is great. And that your observation of story-telling is so true. You could probably write a pretty damn good article to get published about the theory in addition to the book deal of the stories themselves.

    I definitely would love more of these short stories.


    which one is yours!?

  9. oh haha.just kidding the first 3!! how lovely!

  10. Comments 8 and 9 are from cousin Nicole, by the way. Isn't she just sooo cute?
    Vanessa been loving your blogs too, especially this one.