A Leatherman, Goal Zero solar charger, Gorilla Tape, and a Black Diamond headlamp. I never thought those would be the important items in my suitcase, but apparently so. Peace Corps packing is quite different from vacation packing.
I have no idea what I truly need in Lesotho for the Peace Corps, but I’m following the advice of other (PCVs) Peace Corps Volunteers.
I packed my solar panel, “Goal Zero” for charging my cell phone, as we shall not have electricity. I’m not sure how to use it, but I’m sure I’ll figure it out. What about my “LuminAid” solar light, to read in my hut at night.
I also purchased a “Leatherman, Wingman” as I shall need pliers, a screwdriver, bottle opener (crucial) a wire stripper (maybe) and more.
The “Black Diamond” Spot Storm headlamp will help me find the outdoor toilet in the middle of the night, and gorilla tape, to block the icy cold air from gaps in the windows when it snows in the winter, and I’m tucked inside my sleeping bag with layers of clothing.
Half my suitcase is filled with exercise equipment, like the TRX, and exercise ball and bands that I’ve been training with at my gym; my school supplies, my hair coloring products (yes, I’m bringing that with me,) and my face creams and sunblock.
We have to dress professionally, which means no jeans, T-shirts, shorts, or dresses above the knee. I have no idea how to wash my “professional” clothes in very little water, especially cold water, but that is part of our training, and adapting to a new lifestyle.
My suitcases (yes, we’re allowed two,up to 50 lbs each) are already full,and I still have all the other stuff like my sleeping bag, winter clothes, layering, hiking boots etc.
One solution is to have my winter clothes shipped later on, as it will be spring when we arrive in October, and summer in December.
Here is my address in Lesotho, if you’d like to send me a letter, or a surprise. I like surprises!
I leave on Sunday, October 4th for Philadelphia, for “staging,” and our group (30 PCVs- Peace Corps Volunteers) leave on Tuesday for Johannesburg, and then a 6-hour bus ride to Lesotho. I hope to have Internet after the first week, as I’m getting a SIM card in Lesotho, so please e-mail me and keep in touch.
I shall need your support.
Thank you to all my friends.