This morning, at 5:30 a.m., I boarded a plane to Morocco and said goodbye to Niger, potentially for forever.
On Wednesday, Peace Corps Washington decided that terrorist activity, mainly al-Qaeda, in Niger has grown to dangerous levels and Americans are no longer safe. A suspension was issued for Peace Corps Niger and all volunteers were evacuated. All 98 Niger PCVS are now in Morocco for what is called a transition conference. We will spend the next few days discussing our options and officially ending our Niger service.
The last few days have been incredibly hard for all of us. I was at the PC training site for in-service training when the news was delivered and was flown to Zinder the next day so I could go to Dantchiao, pack my things and say goodbye. I had a total of one hour to leave behind the life that has given me so much and shaped me into a better person. I was allowed two nights in Zinder to continue organizing and bidding farewell. On Saturday, Team Zinder departed its home and we spent the night in Mardi and both teams continued on to Niamey for more briefing and the final night in Niger.
Words cannot describe how sucky this. I am not ready to end this life, return to my American one or start another. I am not ready to make big decisions, nor do I really want to.
Leaving here is one of the hardest things I’ve ever endured, primarily because it’s not my decision. I don’t want to go. My service has ended before it really began. Niger is my home and soon it will be a scene in my past.
I’ve cried many tears the last few days and walked around in state of disbelief. I ate and drank till my heart didn’t feel empty.
Morocco is definitely an adjustment from Niger. It’s so green and industry seems decades ahead of Niger. It’s colder and less dusty. It’s beautiful, but I miss my home.
I can’t keep my thoughts straight right now but I plan to update more soon. Thanks for all the support.
Always and forever,