1. Fiji My two families

    My father huffed and puffed, my mother “ooh”ed and “ahh”ed, keeping her scrapes and scratches to herself.  We filed in line, one village boy leading my father, my mother, me, followed by a second village boy as our guide.  We traipsed through the rainforest on a barely worn and overgrown trail.  We were bound for a hidden waterfall. I was fortunate to have my parents visit me in Fiji.  I was fortunate to have them visit me when I studied abroad in Rome.  That was my father’s first trip out o...

  2. Guatemala La Gringa

    The heat rising from the pavement was visible as I made my way along the winding road. The smell of kerosene hung like a cloud around my head in the stagnant air. Breathe in, breathe out. One, two, one, two; all of my efforts focused on the common goal of putting one foot down in front of the other as I made my way up a rise. At the top, salvation awaited me in purple shorts and a dingy Comunicaciones fútbol jersey. Don’t stop now. Almost there. The muscles in my calves winced as I begged the...

  3. The Gambia Roots Tour

    Some friends and I went to the Roots Tour.  There, they did cultural displays for the tourists.  These Fulla boys had just been circumcised, and were dressed up in their post circumcision outfits.

  4. Mozambique The Fortunes Of War

    I was taken by  local colleague recently to meet his uncle and eat oranges and peanuts with him. I didn't realize that by the end of the meeting, I would henceforth be obligated to refer to him as my godfather.   The trip to his house was some ten kilometers by bike, the last of which was vividly reminiscent of "...over the river and through the woods." Upon arriving, although given the following context I hesitate to use the cliché, my jaw hit the ground. I was confronted by...

  5. Dominica A Grandpa To Look Up To

    During a long wait at a village bus stop for a ride to town, I was able to witness this moment between a grandpa and grandson.  As we all took refuge from the hot afternoon sun, I noticed what a great photo it would be and thus asked permission to take the photo - luckily the shot came right when the little boy was looking up at his grandpa.  It was nice to see Mr. Frederick out and about, as walking for him was rather difficult after a fall had rendered him partially disabled years back.  On...

  6. St. Lucia Living Without Nelbert Phillips

    Nelbert Philips was a plump 12 year-old sixth grader that constantly projected a mischievous grin that contrasted against his dark complexion. When asked a question, he would tilt his head slightly to the left and ponder your motivation for asking.  Slowly that smile would emerge and his face would expand. Sometimes he would answer, other times he would shy-away and disappear into the background.    Nelbert’s friends were also the quiet and shy types, more studious, less “troublesome.” On th...

  7. Guyana Renelle

    A young girl participates in the local cultural group which highlights song and dance that has been a part of Amerindian culture and is being passed down from generation to generation.   Don't let her cute demeanor let your guard down!  Renelle is a very spirited child and I have come to really enjoy her pokes and prods as well as all of her questions about myself, my wife, and what we are doing there. 

  8. Lesotho Anatomy of a Basotho Wedding

    I met my husband, a fellow PCV, at staging in Philidelphia.  Neither one of us had ever attended a wedding in Lesotho, so we had no idea what to expect.  It turned out that it was a lot of walking back and forth!  It spanned two days, and it was an experience that we'll never forget.  The best part was the involvement of our students and fellow teachers.

  9. Cambodia Hands

    This photo was taken in a small lean-to on the side of the road in Prey Veng Province, Cambodia. My wife (Kara) and I were visiting our adopted grandmothers and they were always holding our hands and telling us about their lives. Their sons and daughters were all killed during the Pol Pot regime and they had no one left to take care of them as they reached old age. They lived off of the food and what little aid they could get from the local pagoda. By the end of our service they were convince...

  10. Guatemala Styrofoam Wedding

    As the young Guatemalan bride sits down with her groom to eat their reception lunch, the "girl bride" is busy playing with styrofoam flakes that showered the newlyweds after they exchanged their vows.

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“Sunset at the Railroad” by PCV Nicholas Baylor Hall. Namibia, 2011.