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January 18, 2023

Remembering Stephen Reid and Djeswende Pasgo Reid

Their life together carried them around the world, then back to Stephen’s home in Concord, New Hampshire. By Steven Boyd Saum   Concord, New Hampshire, was where Stephen Reid was born and raised and where, decades later, he returned with his wife and love of his life, Djeswende Pasgo Reid. In between were years and continents and family. Peace Corps service took Steve to Niger 1979–81, teaching middle school English in the town of Madaoua. He returned to work for the Peace Corps agency in D.C.; it was there he and Wendy met. She was studying as an undergraduate after stretches touring internationally with...

August 23, 2022

Silver and Saddles

My Tuareg silverwork reminds me of the hidden beauty amid the vast arid scrubland of the Nigerien Sahel. By Cathy Sunshine   During my second year as a health educator in Aderbissinat, Niger, my work partner and I had new saddles made for our two camels. The camels were our work transport, purchased for us by Peace Corps. There were no paved roads in the barren landscape around Aderbissinat, only tracks in the sand. Volunteers in larger towns got mopeds; we got camels. In addition to working in the village clinic, we would ride the camels several miles into the bush...

November 4, 2020

Hide Not Your Sorrow

A phone call and a lesson from Niger in the time of COVID By William F.S. Miles Photo: Faralu, a friend in Niger who reached out to the author to make sure his family was OK. Early in our new COVID-19 era last spring, a phone call and forwarded WhatsApp message from near my old Peace Corps site poignantly reminded me of the transnational compassion and solidarity that Peace Corps engenders. Twenty years ago I had received a similar urgent message of concern. Then it was about my 10-year-old son, Samuel, with whom I had just visited my friends in the...

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