Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Saying Goodbye to Paul and Renee

It is difficult to say “goodbye” (Tofa, in Samoan) to fellow Peace Corps Volunteers. It is especially hard when they are members of your same training group and in your same program. Such it is with the other married couple, Paul Sylvester and Renee Moog, who have decided to return to their home in Portland, Oregon.

Paul and Renee labored a long time over their decision. It took them over a year for the application process before coming to Samoa. They have been here for nine months. A younger Renee had been in the Peace Corps in the African country of Senegal. She knew French and her Samoan was something to be admired. Paul had traveled and was an excellent carpenter who built most of their seaside Samoan house in their beautiful village of Ma’asina. He also was our resident expert on bicycles and gardens. They both had developed friendships with people of their village.

But there comes a time when you decide that the Peace Corps and/or Samoa are not for you. They made the right decision. Sometimes the chemistry or place just doesn’t work out. It is time to move on to something else. Mary and I shall miss them.

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