I really enjoyed the conference. We got a lot of useful information about closing our service and transitioning into post-PC life. The regional (EMA) director was there as well as our Desk Officer from D.C. We got to stay in a really nice hotel and had most of our meals provided. The conference period ended with a final dinner on Friday night for which we all dressed up and I debuted a new dress.
Each night, we’d usually all do dinner together at a restaurant. One night, we bought groceries and cooked a taco dinner. I’m going to miss communal cooking. I’m going to miss the tight-knit sense of community we shared in general. Though many of the volunteers are people I probably wouldn’t have been friends with back in the States, they are all a sort of family to me. We are all bound by our collective experience here, one that no one else will fully understand, even volunteers who came before us.
Inevitably people will ask me “if you could do it all over again, would you?” At points in my service my answer would have been a resounding ‘no.’ But now my answer is “yes.” I met so many great people on this adventure and coming out the other side of my struggles has done me good, probably even more than I realize right now. I am the strongest person I know. I don’t say this to be arrogant, but to acknowledge with healthy pride my perseverance.