AmeriCorps*VISTA Orientation, Day 1

Day 1: 9/22/09

Left LA at 720am, arrived in Dallas at noon.

Got onto the chartered AmeriCorps bus to find awkward nerdy kid trying really really really hard to be loud and outgoing. Sat next to a VISTA who was my age with two kids, she lives in Visalia and this is her first job. She was a great person and it made me happy to be in service in an organization with the likes of her – all of us coming from very different backgrounds, etc.

My roommate has implemented a towel usage system. When she first mentioned this, I giggled, thinking it impossible. But she shot me a nasty look and dragged me to the bathroom, where the hand towel I used to wash my face was folded on the countertop. “Like, what does this mean?” she prodded, and proceeded to explain where we should place our individual towels when they are clean/dirty/used but still useable.

Headed down to dinner, sat at a table with great girls, watched a pre-PSO (Pre-Service Orientation) video that made me forget all my woes I expressed to Ally this morning about regret and “grass is always greener” type feelings. On the video, quotes like “Poverty cannot be allowed in a nation of this wealth,” “I actually feel like I am living in America for the first time in my life,” and “It’s about capacity-building.” Made me stoked.

Befriended Meaghan and Sara at dinner – both serving in Nevada – and had margaritas in the lobby with Meaghan (19 year-old Samoan girl) and laughed over silly, silly stuff. Retired to bed to find said roommate asking me what time I would wake up for 7am breakfast. Apparently, responding “7am” was not cool.

Excited to learn more.

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