Celebrating Independence Day, Peace Corps-style
By Erica Burman on Tuesday, July 6th, 2010
For some Returned Peace Corps Volunteers, July 4th was an occasion to “fly the Peace Corps flag” in their hometown parades. Kevin Laughlin of the Idaho Returned Peace Corps Volunteers wrote to let us know that a small but colorful group of RPCVs took part in the Boise “We the People” parade, with “Peace Corps generations generating future Peace Corps Volunteers.” Among those those present, he reports, were the group’s former president Sam Greer (who came back from Oregon to participate); John Hooper and his daughters; and Carol Skov who again had a grandson in the Parade.
For Peace Corps Volunteers overseas, Independence Day is marked in a variety of ways. We asked for some memories of July 4th spent far from home, and here’s a sample of what we heard:
- “We tried to climb Mt. Apo on Mindanao but got rained out by rains near a typhoon. When we returned to town we went to the 4th of July picnic thrown by the USIS officer there.
- “Volleyball with the Attache. Oreo cookies and M&Ms. A trip to the cayes. But usually a day like any other.”
- “In Niger we made a low-tech ‘mechanical’ bull from a 55 gallon drum, rope, and logs. We had a bull-riding competition and rodeo-themed party for the 4th. Worked perfectly, and then we had the drum turned into a grill. Though if anyone asks…yes, we all wore helmets when we were riding it.”
- “Dancing to Bruce Springsteen’s Born in the USA, and then a regular day in rural paradise ”
Do you have any special overseas 4th of July memories? Did your RPCV group have an Independence Day presence?