Date: Thu, 17 May 2001 15:10:20 -0700 (PDT)
From: eric stikes omsakob@yahoo.com
Subject: salutations

Greetings. My name is Eric Stikes. I am floating around on the internet doing research for a paper on engineering power and water systems for third-world countries and somehow happened upon your CYU Later web site, specifically on the letters from Africa. Who are you people? Those letters are great. I laughed a lot reading them. They are from a term in the Peace Corps? I also checked out the rest of the web site, very nice drawings. Anyway, I am just wondering what people and opportunities await me as I enter the realm of environmental engineering in the third-world. This is specifically what I am studying in college. So, wish me luck. Thank you very much for the letters.
Eric Stikes

Date: Tue, 10 Jun 1997 15:55:19 -0500 (CDT)
From: clear day raining st0724@student-mail.jsu.edu
Subject: On letters from the lost world.....

HELLO and GOOD DAY to whomever is receiving this message:

I am a sophomore at Auburn University, currently working at Jacksonville State University as a computer laboratory assistant. I am working on a Wildlife Science degree {I hope to work on a preservation in Africa}, and am planning to donate at least one year of my life to the Peace Corps in Africa {before graduate school} during which I hope to teach English and Biology/Science. I found this site [PISKOPS: Letters >From Africa] out of shear luck, and am impressed with the sanity of your friend Joseph. His letters are enlightening and real. I have heard many of those "this was the most invigorating experience of my life" stories, and "the peace corps is a way of giving back" stories.........I just want real. I want to know what I am getting in to. I don't want sugar coated.......I may when I get there and see for myself, but not now, and thanks to these letters - I am finally getting that "real".

It would be nice if you could post letters from other individuals out in the field. I need this perspective - and would love one on one correspondence. If you know of any people who aren't opposed to having their addresses shared among the few here with me who are interested in everything about life there.......please give them my address:

Deborah Smith . 108 Body St. Gadsden, AL. 35904. USA.

This address will change when I move back down to my AU apartment....but that is not until September. I am looking forward to your reply.....and any outside information.......and any correspondence with the people who are where I will be in a couple of years.

Sincerest thanks,

Deborah Smith @:>

Deborah Smith st0724@student-mail.jsu.edu
If we don't,...... who will?

Subject: Piskops
From: christy22@juno.com (C hristy M McKinney)
Date: Thu, 10 Apr 1997 04:31:20 EDT

Fabulous! What a great read! Keep it coming. I've thorough enjoyed reading Joe's trials & trevails (the belly button ring-worm WAS a little gross) in West Africa and I'll be visiting to find out what happens next.

The changed names & places make it suspensful, but I'd place my bets he went to UW & your a Microsoft geek. If I'm right (I have been known on a rare occasion to be wrong) & you don't want any palava from the PC administration, you might consider changing a few more details. If I'm WAY off, then your doing a great job!

I'm a PC applicant whose already spent a year in Nigeria as an exchange student 1987-88 & was just back there in 12/96. I should find out my country in a month or so & am hoping...yes, still, even after reading Jo's letters, that I'll go to West Africa. He's given me the best info so far as to what the Peace Corps "is really like". The Peace Corps beaucracy is overflowing with "official" information. I want the unofficial. Thanks for providing it!

Princess Kamehameha

P.S. I feel like I'm on the right (or wrong, depending on the way you look at it) track, I've already bought Anna Karenina and Brothers Karamazov to take with me.

From: Anya_Weber@brown.edu (Anya Weber)
Newsgroups: alt.peace-corps
Subject: can we get more interesting stuff on this newsgroup?
Date: Mon, 03 Feb 1997 11:00:09 +0600
Organization: Brown University

i just finished applying to peace corps and if they accept me i will most likely go wherever they send me. i wish this newsgroup contained more things like the "letters from africa," and less of the "christians suck" variety. i especially wonder why more returned peace corps people who have come back to the US and some of whom presumably have access to newsgroups don't write in here and tell their stories.

maybe it's because 2.25 years of one's life is a long chunk of time and it's hard to know even where to begin talking about it. or maybe it's a reluctance to discuss one's life with strangers. all i'm saying is, to any returned volunteers out there, please write in SOMETHING about your experience, whether a generalized summary or an anecdote--anything at all will be invaluable to me and to other people who are getting ready to go. and that's one of the main purposes of this discussion list, yes?



From: CapitainJ@aol.com
Date: Fri, 31 Jan 1997 18:25:24 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Thanks

Thanks for putting your letters from Africa on the internet. I really enjoy them. My daughter is a PCV in Krygyzstan (Central Asia) and send home great letters too. She told the story on dancing for money at a Turkish Cirmumcision and a Halloween Party where one of the PCV's shaved his head and came as Lenin. I think that all PCV's have great humor to survive. PC MOM

From: pjw@sablez.demon.co.uk (Paul Weinberger)
Newsgroups: bit.org.peace-corps,alt.peace-corps
Subject: Re: Letter from Africa
Date: Fri, 01 Nov 96 19:13:11 GMT

Wow, get a grip ONJ, this Piskops is surely a brick short of a load. The CFA Franc was way, way overvalued, and as such served for nothing but to feed the middle class African appetite for Western (mostly French) imports to the detriment of any possible long term meaningful economic development. It was only possible to keep the value so artificially propped by endless underwriting by the bank of France. Surely the cruelest form of aid, ie forever subsidising Western imports at the expense of any local enterprise.

Anyway titi, yu pidgin de simila tumos to wi-on krio. A sabi we yu de. Kalo kalo posin no had fo no. If yu ge fo hala pan di French-dem, wetin mek yu no put yu on nem de pan yu leta? Or somtem dat na yu real nem ONJ; yu no de tich di pikin dem fo sing?

Anyone reading this wants a more lucid (and equally entertaining) account of life in "Acirema" could read an excellent book - 'The Innocent Anthropologist' by Nigel Barley.

Paul Weinberger

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