Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The Big House

Hello friends,

I’m sorry it’s taken me FOREVER to write this first post from Casa Grande. I won’t get into excuses about not having the internet or my fingers being so sore to type or any number of true things I could use as reason for not updating.

Here I am, 2 ½ weeks into the trail building in Casa Grande. The blisters on my feet have turned to calluses, the strip of skin below my fingers is starting to become rough, my skin is tan and always dirty, all of my clothing smells like dust. But, I no longer wake up with sore fingers (for the most part), and eating fairly well, writing lots of letters (hurray for successful resolutions!), and building LOTS of trail.

In fact, Fire 2 completed its first full trail today and we have moved on to re-routing another nearby trail. We walked the whole trail after work today and I was so excited to see how far we have come so far and how well we have done. It really is a nice trail and a lot of people (those we know and those we don’t know) have stopped to thank us for our work.

Speaking of that, the community here is absolutely amazing. Everyone we meet is looking for a way to help us out and make our time here more fun. We are constantly given free treats and a lot of recommendations for things to do while we’re here. So far in the plans for me are a few trips to Phoenix (one this weekend and another to run a 5K through the zoo with some teammates), a Grand Canyon trip to see my parents, and a visit from Erick!

I’m going to try and be better about updating (as usual) because I don’t want to overwhelm each post with info but also don’t want to leave too much out. BUT this is all for now, thanks for checking in.


Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Back to the Grind

Hello Friends,

Like many of my favorite TV shows, I have returned from a holiday hiatus. I'm back in Denver, having returned from a lovely (yet as always, too short) break home with my family and friends. I enjoyed every bit of relaxing, eating, drinking, and catching up with everyone AND of course spending as much time as I could with Erick. In true high-altitude fashion, Denver welcomed me back with dry skin and a nose bleed, but I was happy to meet up with my friends downtown last night to watch the Rose Bowl game and enjoy some snacks.

This week is a transition week for NCCC, which means we're debriefing our last projects and briefing our upcoming ones, with a few meetings scattered here and there. Today I had Assistant Team Leader (ATL) training and later this week I have training for my other new job, Peer Helper. Other than that, I'm getting really excited to head down to Casa Grande, AZ to warm up and build some trails (while also exploring a state I've always wanted to visit).
'm hoping that I will be able to do a lot of good work this project, spend lots of time outdoors, get lots of ISP hours done, and really bond with my team.

Speaking of hopes, I'm also working on some New Year's Resolutions. I've never really had resolutions before, but I think starting small will be a good start. I feel like it might be easier to get a handle on resolutions without the troubles of homework and swimming (not that I don't miss college). I'm hoping to get into/stay in good shape (maybe find a road race to run in AZ), take more vitamins, get a handle on plans for the year/grad school/next year, work on my Team Leader application, and overall enjoy these new adventures I'm experiencing.

As a side note, during our Unit Meeting today we watched a really cool PBS documentary piece on the CCC, the program started by FDR in the 30s that NCCC is modeled after/comes from. It was especially interesting because the conditions under which the CCC was started (lack of jobs, young people finishing school and needing something to do, lots of economic growth to be done/supported) are also present today in different ways, and we can relate to the founding members of this group of public service adventurers. I suggest you check out the Wikipedia page if you'd like to learn more!

That's all from me for now. My next post will probably be from sunny, warm Casa Grande, Arizona!