Volunteer: CarrieAnn Tkaczyk
I was in N170 in Nepal from 1990-1992.
Contributions from CarrieAnn Tkaczyk
Assimilation. We were trained, versed, and talked to ad nauseum on the subject. So much so that during my first month in a village on top of an Annapurna foothill, it was a piece of cake to find my exact place on the downward trajectory of culture shock. Homesickness—check. Anxiety—check. What I hadn’t expected was that no matter how clearly I defined my symptoms, checking them off could not fortify my heart. I had entered a world of sudden isolation and silence. At night I...
A word of advice: avoid moving to a village where a volunteer preceded you. When I moved to Baglung Pani, Andy Walker was my own personal Freddy Krueger, popping into every conversation, and shredding my every deed. At each “good morning,” people would point to the hostel next to the school and tell me, “Andy Walker built that. What are you going to build?” At noon, the woman who gave me tea would drill me with questions in rapid Nepalese and then announce, “You don’t speak as wel...