This past week I have been in Durres for my group's COS conference. The first thing that we were told is that it doesn't just mean close of service but continuation of service as well. This week has been the first time that everyone is our group has been together, along with the Georgia transfers. It was really interesting to look around the room and see the people who are still all here. We only lost a few people over the past two years. Our group is still going strong.
Anyway, the conference itself was a bunch of paperwork, how COS will work and also talks about the future. We all were able to discuss our service here in Albania, the impact we've had and what we will miss most about Albania. Another fun aspect of the conference was to talk about where we are all going after COS and what we will be doing. A lot of people are going back to the US and starting grad school. There are some people who will be traveling around after they finish here. A select few people are even staying in Albania. Other fun parts of the conference were Volunteer Olympics (raki tasting and blind texting were two events), the talent show, getting new movies and tv shows, seeing all the volunteers who I rarely ever see, and singing show tunes while drinking wine :) The group I came here with is amazing and I'm glad I got to spend some time with them again before we all start going our separate ways. I know I will see quite a few of them again but it's always the question of when??
On the last night of the conference I was given very exciting news - Peace Corps Morocco is interested in taking me as a 3rd year extension volunteer!!! I do not know all the details yet about PC Morocco but I think that hearing about on the last day of the COS conference was perfect. I now have to talk to my country director, do more medical stuff and figure out the time line for me leaving Albania, spending a month in America and then leaving for Morocco. It is crazy to think that I only have a few months left!! I really don't feel like I've been here for two years. I still remember the day I arrived in Albania. Oh those were the good ol' days :)
In 2 weeks, group 13 will be arriving in Albania. This group will be the biggest group we have ever gotten in Albania, 52 volunteers! I will be busy during their training helping to find housing and doing presentations to the trainees. Also in a week, my big project with the Roma/Gypsy community will be in full swing. We are giving out the first packages of food and holding meetings with the families to discuss community service projects. There will be lots to do and I will update everyone soon on how everything is going.
I hope everyone is doing well and staying warm!! Spring is almost here!