Today was our last day of training! This afternoon, I found out which homestay village I will join and which language I will learn. Since I can speak French, I was chosen, along with two other guys in my stage, to learn Malinke. It is a dialect spoken in the Kayes region of Mali. From what the current volunteer trainers have said, it only slightly differs from Bamabara in pronunciation and meaning. Therefore, I can deduce that my permanent site will be near Kita or Manatali which is in the western part of Mali, near Senegal. Our team of 23 is going to be split up into 3 homestay villages, but luckily we are all approx. 10 km from eachother, so we can visit eachother on Sundays.It is crazy how close we have all become in such a short time. This support system is going to be so crucial for all of our survival and sanity in Mali.
While I am a homestay, my days will consist of language classes from Mon-Sat, with Sundays off. I will be there for two and a half weeks and then return to Tso to regroup and have more technical training. So, this is going to be my last blog post for a while!! Tomorrow, I relinquish all forms of communication!! I will be going to a village where I don't speak the language and can't communicate! Charades anyone?! While this may seem daunting, I am not too nervous, just mainly excited to being this new chapter in my Peace Corps experience!