March is for International Women’s&Poetry Day

I missed honoring both March 8 and March 21, but here is a poem I wrote about the moon which I feel symbolizes and commemorates both:

written 01.31.18 – revised on 03.19.18

On the eve of the blood moon, I ponder the Moon and her maternity. Tonight, a mischievous light bathes the Earth, a pink hue pervading the darkness to come. Nature, in all her forms, swells in birth of the Evening’s dawn – birds sound their choruses, roosters preen and peck, flowers stretch as light fades…And now the remaining light bends: blue refracts outward, while red oozes forth, a bloody soldier staining the field in the name of universal beneficence.  


The moon appears

A yellow orb swelling

Like a woman’s bulge


I feel her aches and pains

Her craters endured

Her majesty underestimated


She looks a barren mistress yet

She wields a powerful will

To pull the tides and push the winds


The moon mirrors

A yellow sun’s burning

Like raindrops reflect a rainbow


I feel her yearnings and desires

Her beauty broadcast

Her duty bound


She looks an autonomous ornament yet

She is caught in a cyclical cycle

To wane into darkness and wax into remembrance


Once, a child, torn from the womb of Earth’s soil

Now Queen over the unruly oceans and womankind

They are captives of her recurrent spells

Chained to sails, driven by the winds she controls

A mad mother of circular caprice


Also, an outcast, tethered to her own fated toil

Only to tour the Earth’s outer rim for eternity

Constantly reminding those wells of

Earthbound creatures, who covet the role of controls

She is no more sovereign than her subjects


PC projects: Keeping Connected and Staying Motivated

When things at site get slow during bpit-term (summer vacation), it’s healthy to remember that our service isn’t just about serving our Thai communities, but additionally about supporting our Peace Corps community.

PC projects I am currently a part of:

  • Sticky Rice magazine contributor
  • Curriculum Team member

Keeping connected: Sticky Rice magazine

  • Now, I will be a consistent contributing book reviewer (already doing that on Goodreads – just have to edit and add for my PC audience). First review is Siddhartha – being published at the end of the month. Banner below made by the magical PCV Michael.


Staying motivated: Curriculum Team

  • Gives me deadlines and large-scale projects to focus on: calling fellow PCVs to compile their successes and challenges in the classroom, creating and recording a Pronunciation training (soon to be released), organizing and re-imagining best teaching practices and content.
  • Allows me to have Skype calls with 2 of the most motivated, skilled, and happy volunteers in group 129: KC and Clarence – as someone who does not reach out often to fellow volunteers on my own, these scheduled calls are all the more meaningful


I know that being apart of these smaller circles of influence help me stay connected and motivated to my commitment of service. Cheers to 1 more year! Su su!

Gains and Losses

My high school water polo coach used to say (as the Varsity team said good-bye to the seniors at the end of the season) that we weren’t losing key players – we were gaining new players.

Of course, we were losing some of our best players AND we were gaining potentially great new ones, yet the philosophy is one that has stuck with me:

Focus on what there is to gain instead of brooding over what has been lost. The past has passed; time to look forward.

Looking back on this past year of gains and losses, of novelty and routine, of highs and lows, I think reflecting on past losses give more meaning to future gains and the experience as a whole, because those losses were key players in my journey and growth.

In this post I will focus on the human connections that have had a large impact on me.

Although I have lost the physical proximity to some of the PCVs from group 129, who have left Thailand ending their service early for one reason or another, I have also gained lifelong friends.

Danielle was my neighbor, co-teacher and closest friend during PST.
Cheri was in the province above me and we were great travel and swim partners.
 Jessica and I shared long philosophical discussions and hours of language training together.
Liz and Libby were and still are my loves of light. Luke and Ben were the first volunteers I ever met after arriving in San Francisco to begin my Peace Corps service. 


I’ve lost one host family, only to gain another, and I will be forever connected and grateful to both.

Singburi family
Singburi kids
Surat Thani family
Surat Thani brother


I’ve been so lucky to have gained and lost so many visitors – their brief glimpses into my life, have served to rejuvenate me again and again.

Kevin was my first visitor – we lost our worries and gained our SCUBA certifications.
My adventurous aunts and cousin visited for a great start to the New Year.
Kalina was a surprise visit; knew her as a friend of a friend, yet she truly is a kindred spirit.

I have gained loads more supportive people at my school, hundreds of sweet students and various members in my surrounding community, not to mention all the Peace Corps staff and volunteers still with me; however, I will not physically lose them for another year, so there will be another blog post to commemorate them when the time comes…