Eso es alcanzar lo más alto,

lo que tal vez nos dará el Cielo:

no admiraciones ni victorias

sino sencillamente ser admitidos

como parte de una Realidad innegable,

como las piedras y los árboles.

Jorge Luis Borges

Fervor de Buenos Aires (1923)

This is the best that can happen,

What heaven perhaps will grant us:

Not to be wondered at or required

To succeed

But simply to be let in

As part of an undeniable Reality,

Like stones of the road, like trees.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Name That Blog!

I just lost my first attempt to write a post but that's ok because it was kind of boring and serious anyway.  So instead, I'll start with a list of possible names I came up with for this blog.  They are:
  • El Salvawhere?
  • I think I have lost my everloving mind
  • Do volunteers really get paid in tins of guacamole?
  • How do you say, "Don't mug me, the only thing I've got on me is this blue plastic Crohn's bracelet" in Spanish?
However, "I think I missed the turnoff to Pouce Coupe" (poos-koopy) won because me and Shelber came up with it during a fb chat.  For those of you not in the know, Pouce Coupe is a little town up here in the north and we were joking that I was going to wake up in El Salvador one morning and think, "crap, where am I, did I miss the turnoff to Pouce Coupe?", just because really, me going to Pouce Coupe for any reason is about as ridiculous as me going to El Salvador for three years.  The other names are pretty self explanatory.

So for the past few months I have been scrambling like mad to get my thesis finished and defended and now revised.  On top of that I've been working full time as a manager with Alberta Health Services, as well as trying to sell my house, my furniture, my car, and everything else that won't fit into the two suitcases I'll be taking with me on my 3 year journey to El Salvador.  If you are like many people, you may ask where El Salvador is (and hence the first alternative blog name).  Google it.  The second question I get is "why El Salvador?"  Well, basically I've signed up for a three year assignment doing HIV education with a local organization called the New Dawn Association of El Salvador (ANADES) with funding for the position provided by the Mennonite Central Committee (MCC).  The assignment is partly HIV prevention and partly advocacy for people living with AIDS.  I leave from Edmonton to Pennsylvania on October 17 for an 11 day orientation, then on to Guatemala for a couple of months of language study, and then on to El Salvador.  Quite a few people are interested in what I'll be doing, so I decided to start a blog about the whole process.  And since I haven't really had time to wrap my brain around the fact that I am actually doing this, I decided I'd start the blog before I leave as a way to give myself some time to realize what is about to happen.  I haven't really had much time to spend processing this all, and I've jolted awake a few nights in a bit of panic and craving cigarettes.  I think blogging may be the more emotionally and physically responsible outlet for these feelings.  So here goes, I hope to post lots of pictures because that's usually what I'm interested in, and I also hope to use this blog to talk about what it's like down there without getting too preachy about gluttonous North American Walmart-loving economically enslaving spiritually void masses in their mcmansions.  But that shouldn't be a problem.

So... bon voyage to me and here's to the bit of narcissistic pleasure known as blogging.  Enjoy!