Kyle’s Journey in Armenia

Just Another Peace Corps Blog

  • Kyle? In Armenia?

    My name is Kyle, and I am a Peace Corps volunteer in Noyemberyan, Armenia. I will live here until August 2008 and am an Information Technology volunteer. In addition to my primary assignment developing my region's WiFi internet, I also teach computer and English classes to area youth. Thank you for visiting!

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11
Jul 2008
Last Week in Noyemberyan
Posted in Peace Corps by Kyle at 11:50 pm |

That’s right - it’s that time to say goodbye. After almost two years of pigs in the streets, no running water, and some of the fondest memories of my life, last week marked my final days in Noyemberyan. I returned home last Monday after a long time away at the Green Camp. I also had a wonderful couple of days in Yerevan with some friends of mine from IOC Camp, and they took me to Etchmiatsin Church near Yerevan. It is the heart of the Armenian Apostolic Church, and very beautiful. We even got a VIP tour of the museum and got to see the gold alphabet and cross that was made (and hidden) during Soviet times, as the churches weren’t allowed to accumulate wealth.

Anyway, after coming home, the goodbyes quickly began. After finishing up some final work, we held our last English club on the 4th of July. We bought some meat and cooked burgers and hot dogs, sang some patriotic tunes, and had a great time til night. After that it was pure craziness - 4 days of meeting with close friends from English clubs or NGOs or the school, small receptions and large parties, a million and one small trinkets given, and a lot of genuine hugs and handshakes.

It’s very difficult to describe my last few days at site. In Armenia, there is little difference between a co-worker and a friend (the Armenian word is actually “work friend”), which is amplified for Peace Corps volunteers. Our counterpart is our closest ally at site, and every person I worked with has helped me out personally in some way these past two years. So, the goodbyes were hard, especially knowing I might never see many of them again. Realistically, Noyemberyan is far, far away from Dallas, but I’ll try to make it back in a few years. I’m sad to go, but my departure has been bittersweet: I also left feeling like I truly accomplished many of the things I wanted to do in Armenia. I also learned so much more and made much closer friends and connections in my community then I ever expected. I will miss The Noy very much, but I know it’s on a good track.

That being said, I’m now in Yerevan. Today I completed my Close of Service survey, medical exam, exit interviews, admin paperwork, etc etc. Only a few days left as a volunteer! For those that don’t know, I am leaving Armenia for good on July 21st. From Yerevan, I will go to St. Petersburg and Moscow, Russia, for 9 days, and then take the 7 day Trans-Siberian train ride (one of my 10 things to do before I die!) to Mongolia and finish in Beijing on August 8th, which happens to coincide with the Opening Ceremony of the Olympics!!!! We are spending 4 days there, visiting the walls and watching some games, then flying home out of Hong Kong. I’ll be moving to Dallas over Labor Day weekend, and settled in with a job and my new house soon thereafter. Weird… life is moving forward.

Before I leave, I’m going to this year’s International Outreach Camp for 5 days, just to see the new students to better understand the future of the program. We did so much work putting the camp together; it’s a shame I won’t be there for the whole program, but I know it will go off well again this year.

So - that’s my story :) I’ll try and post IOC updates and some final pictures. But, thank you all for following my experience these past few years. I hope you’ve learned as much about Peace Corps and Armenia as I have.


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One Response:

Mrs. Z said:

Congrats on winding up your 2 years in Armenia. I’ll sure miss the blog updates and pictures. It’s been great getting to “know you” and sharing in this experience via your blog. I’ve certanly learned a lot about Armenia in the past 2 year.
Best wishes to you in Dallas and if ever in Columbus stop by the “Z” household. I’m sure we can find some vodka and throw some pork on the grill :)

Best wishes!
Mrs. Z


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The views expressed herein are the views of the author and do not express those of Peace Corps Armenia or the United States government.