Thursday, July 5, 2018

The fall-out

As usual, I had several posts written up, just waiting for internet access to have the pictures added and be posted all at once. I think I have about seven in draft form right now. However, the last post I wrote got so much attention, I feel I need to give an update, and let this stand long enough for people to see it, and then we'll get back to your (ir)regularly scheduled silliness.

Apparently my last post made the rounds through much of Peace Corps Guyana. The new volunteers, fresh into the country, read it and brought it up to staff during training. I have no idea what the outcome of that discussion was (although I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall), but I started getting messages from other Guyana PCVs. Word was getting around. Volunteers I'd never even met before had somehow heard about the post, read it, and were reaching out to me to share their support. It crossed all boundaries, too. Every cohort in the country, from all different areas. It seems I've struck a chord.

Not one negative message, at least from the volunteers.

I was informed two days ago that I will be sent home with Interrupted Service, which means it's no fault of my own that I have to leave. I'm not being drummed out for bad behavior or anything. I was informed on July 3rd that I'd be leaving Guyana July 26th. that doesn't even give me a chance to say goodbye to the scattered volunteers in my own region, with whom I've served these two years. Devastating, to say the least.

The reasons given were:
 "loss of counterpart and supervisor." I have both. They even sent my supervisor the memo. My counterpart won an award last year from Peace Corps.
"Isolation at site during the school break." I have been left at site over breaks before, and my supervisor and I had already submitted a plan to cover the month when the campus was deserted. I even offered to take the whole break as a vacation, since I've only used six vacation days over two years.
Finally, "Projects do not fall within the framework." I have been doing the same work for two years. How could it suddenly not fall within the framework now? Wouldn't it make sense, if they don't approve of my projects, to work with me to change them, rather than sending me home with barely two weeks notice?

I am in the middle of the appeals process. Keep your fingers crossed for me. 

Here's the original memo (I've replaced names with ***, but made no other changes):

July 3, 2018
TO:                  Carolyn, Peace Corps Volunteer, Peace Corps Guyana
FROM:            ***, Country Director, Peace Corps Guyana
SUBJECT:      Interrupted Service

Pursuant to the Peace Corps Act, 22 U.S.C. 2504 (i), and Peace Corps Manual Section (MS) 284, Section 5.0 (attached), a Volunteer may be separated with interrupted service status if the Country Director determines that circumstances beyond the control of the Volunteer make it necessary for the Volunteer to leave his or her present assignment.

In this case, I have determined that circumstances in Guyana prevent you from carrying out your assignment (MS 284 5.1(d)), and that there is no viable assignment in Guyana for which you are qualified (MS 284 5.1(c)).

I have determined that the circumstances in Guyana, and specifically at your site, prevent you from carrying out your assignment for the following reasons:

  1. Loss of Primary Counterpart and Supervisor:  We learned that your assigned Supervisors and Counterpart, which included the Executive Director, Principal and Tutor, left your site of assignment, the Bina Hill Institute (BHI), or plan to leave shortly. BHI has not identified fulltime replacement candidates to fill these key positions. These essential oversight roles are required and thus their absence prevents you from carrying out your primary assignment.

  1. PCV Isolation and Insecurity:  Because of the virtual shut down of BHI during the Summer months, the only full-time residence on the remote property would be yourself and the all-male guard service. This situation was deemed unsafe by Staff and the governing body of BHI, the Northern Rupununi District Development Board (NRDDB). Unfortunately, Peace Corps-approved housing will not be consistently available for the duration of your service.

  1. Activities Inconsistent with Framework:  The sector program frameworks are the guiding principles for our activities at sites. These frameworks were designed in partnership with the associated Ministries and align with their development priorities. While Peace Corps staff greatly appreciates the work conducted by the NRDDB in collaboration with you to craft a work plan for the remainder of your service, quite a number of proposed activities presented in the submitted work plan do not aligned with the framework.

Lastly, there are no other available and vetted sites for you to complete your assignment due to the limited time remaining before your scheduled Completion of Service date (November 11, 2018).
Therefore, your effective date of separation from Peace Corps Guyana will be Thursday, July 26, 2018. Your Program Manager will contact you directly to discuss logistical details with you further.

Under paragraph 5.2 of Peace Corps Manual Section 284, you may appeal to the Regional Director for the Inter-America and the Pacific Region (IAP) in writing if you think the reasons for separating you with interrupted service do not apply. The Regional Director will consider documentation provided by you and country staff in determining whether the decision to separate you with interrupted service was appropriate. Except as provided in Peace Corps Manual Section 293 Applicant, Trainee, Volunteer Discrimination Complaint Procedure, the Regional Director’s decision is the final agency action. Therefore, if you wish to appeal, write directly to ***

I am available to speak with you further to discuss anything contained in this memo.
Cara, I thank you for your service to Peace Corps Guyana and the Bina Hill Institute. I will continue supporting you in whatever way I can to ensure a smooth transition from Post back to your Home of Record.
Best Regards,
Country Director
Peace Corps Guyana

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Real Talk

“My country, right or wrong: if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right.”

        -Carl Schurz, 1872
Okay, let's be serious for a minute (admittedly something I'm not very good at). Most of the people leaving everything behind to volunteer in a third world country for two years aren't the same people shouting to build a wall to keep out immigrants from "sh*thole countries." Most are idealistic and genuinely hoping to make a difference.
Some of you are scoffing already, I can tell. 

I feel this way about my country. I may not agree with everything that happens (translation: I definitely don't agree with everything going on) but I still have hope that America can do better; can be better. It's my job, wherever I happen to be, to try to make that happen. 

I feel the same way about Peace Corps.

I am so proud to be a part of Peace Corps. It has been my privilege and my honor for the past two years. I love where I've served: I love my village, I love my region, and I love this country. Just like anywhere else in this world, the people are both wonderful and awful, and I haven't loved every moment of it, but taking this leap into the unknown was one of the best decisions I have ever made. That being said, I'm not blinded by the dazzle of JFK's speeches and Peace Corps glow. If things aren't right, I want to help set them right. I want this agency to be everything it was meant to be.

When I left, my dad gave me the cruelest and yet the most helpful advice: 

"Remember: you are not going to save the world." 

I knew it leaving, and I have had it hammered into me every day here. It was another thing that set me apart from my group. For all our talk of "sustainability" I knew that my real impact would probably be limited to the two years I was here, with -- if I was really good and really lucky -- one or two people really getting something valuable from me, some memory or skill that they would keep long after I was gone. Basically the same effect I think I would have living anywhere for two years. I didn't change the world in the last two years living in New Hampshire, so why would it suddenly be different in Guyana?

In all of those phone interviews before I left, I lied: I didn't think I would make some huge difference. I don't have the messiah complex necessary to think I'm going to drag some third-world country into the first-world, solve all of their problems, all in two years. Are you kidding me? What I really was hoping for was to learn something for myself. Yeah, maybe that's selfish, but that's who I am. At least now when people call me selfish I can say "I was a Peace Corps Volunteer" and it will almost be like a defense.

I did. I learned exactly how much I will stand for, and what choices I could live with. They always tell you to pick your battles, but how can you do that when everything seems to be a battle? We're not supposed to be publicly negative; I've been warned about it more than once. The problem with that is that at thirty-one I'm not willing to fake it very convincingly anymore. These past ten months have been rough. It's been so bad at points that I've been expecting a total breakdown at any moment. People describe it as being at a cliff's edge. I got carried to that edge and tossed off before I even realized I was running out of ground. 

The right thing to do isn't always the right thing for you.

I've had to ask myself way too many times "Is this something I'm willing to get sent home for?" I know it's the right thing to do. I've got a pretty decent moral compass when it comes to big things. The problem is the right thing isn't always in your best interest. I'll give you an example. It's actually one the staff teaches you during training:

A friend in your village comes to your house, telling you she was beaten. What do you do?

The official rule is really really hard for Peace Corps Volunteers to handle. Remember, we're all there because we want to help people. This seems like a clear case of someone to help, right? What would be the right thing to do?
The official answer is nothing. For your own safety. If that girl even talks to you about it, you will have to be moved or sent home. For your own safety. 
I can't stress that enough. There's a good reason they have that policy'; If you help her, you're putting yourself at risk. Whoever beat that girl might come after you in retaliation. You can't stay there anymore.
So... do you help her?

It gets harder when it's not such a clear case. The truth about Peace Corps Guyana is 

Keep your head down, or they will cut it off.

Like I said in a previous post, I'm the chairperson for the Volunteer Advisory Committee. Our official tagline is

The Peace Corps Guyana Volunteer Advisory Council (VAC) shall be the formal representational body for the Peace Corps Volunteers (PCVs) in Guyana. VAC acts as facilitators and mediators between all PCVs in-country and PC staff by assisting in the communication of current issues, concerns and suggestions.

I've done that. During my two years on that committee, I've brought up issues that currently serving volunteers have. As the only representative for the Environmental cohort, and the only Region Nine representative, and the only hinterland representative, I fought tooth and nail not to be excluded from discussions about policy. When my volunteers were being neglected to the point of emergency I would not let the issue go. I brought it up at every single meeting. Staff was sick of hearing it. I was sick of talking about it. As long as nothing was changing, it was my job to keep it on the agenda. And I was definitely punished for it.
Want an example?
Medical care in Region Nine. We're so far out in the middle of nowhere that the PCMOs (the Peace Corps Medical Officers; the staff in charge of our medical care) can't reach us, and we are anywhere from three to eighteen hours away from the nearest hospital, depending on the roads. We have health centres within an hour (under the best conditions) from each site, but those rarely handle more than fevers or pre-natal care. The hospital is where major problems are always evacuated to. The hospital often doesn't even have soap in the bathrooms or un-expired medications on-hand. I once accompanied a student there and five doctors and nurses walked by as she had a bad reaction to medications in the hallway. This is a major concern, obviously, for anyone who has to rely on this facility. I have been told every time to either drop it, or every volunteer in the region would get yanked. Am I willing to be sent home for this? Am I willing to die for this? Do I maybe get everyone pulled from their hard work in their villages? Or do I let it go and maybe have one of them maimed or killed because I didn't demand that Peace Corps put proper measures in place for the volunteers they send here?

The next group arrives in country on Tuesday. If Peace Corps has their way, I'll be getting sent home with "interrupted service" in July. If I have mine, I'll be here until my cohort closes out in November. Either way, I won't get a chance to get to know you very well, and I'm truly sorry for that. You are about to be thrown into something huge. I know you're all freaking out about what to pack right now, but really that's going to be the least of your worries. 

You're about to find out who you are. I just hope it's someone you can live with.

Saturday, May 12, 2018


There's an advisory board called the Volunteer Advisory Committee in every post in Peace Corps. Each cohort has to elect representatives (in our case, about one for every ten volunteers). Since GUY29 was only ten of us, I was the only one elected. For 2016 I was just a regular member of the committee. For all of 2017 I was the co-chair with GUY28's Jackie as Chair. Now for 2018 I'm the Chair. I don't know why I keep forgetting to mention that, but I'm actually pretty proud of it.
So what does that mean? It means that if volunteers have issues, or need go-betweens or mediators with staff, they can go to their VAC person. If staff has ideas for change, they can run it by the committee to get an idea of volunteer perceptions. We do a bunch of projects and stuff too, but in my opinion, those two things are the most important that we do.

In other news, I'm using the fact that I have no running water currently as an excuse not to do anything today.

Also, I'd probably sell my soul for some sour patch kids, or peanut m&m's right now. Cravings are a major downside of living in the middle of nowhere.

A Day in the Life

I've been posting a lot for incoming volunteers lately. The newest batch is coming in soon, but the timing is such that those who are sent out to the Rupununi are going to get here just barely before we all leave, so there's very little overlap. We won't get to help them get settled the way Steven did for me. Also, I completely remember just the months of obsessing about how I didn't know what I was in for. Usually, since I have limited internet access (which is why I so often post half a dozen entries at one go) I only manage to post about events. Events are great, but since it's the exact opposite of normal, it doesn't give anyone a very good idea of what the "normal" really is.

So here we go: This is what an ordinary day in my life here is like.

On a week day, a student will whack the metal pipe with a hunk of wood at oh-god-thirty in the morning (sometime around before five A.M. which is just mean). This gong is the signal for the students to get up. The sun isn't even up yet. I am morally opposed to being up before the sun is.
Soon after, the gong sounds again to signal that the students need to go do grounds-work. They have to rake up the leaves on the compound, pick up the trash that the donkeys have spread everywhere after knocking over the bin in the night, feed and water the chickens, and do stuff down in the garden. By about 6:30 they're raking outside my house, playing music on their cell phones and sometimes even singing. Sometimes I hear them say something like "I think Miss is still asleep." God I wish. Where am I? Usually whimpering and trying to get dressed in the dark as the mosquitoes suck all the blood out of my body. Why am I dressing in the dark? Because there's no electricity, and I can't open my door or window to let in light while I dress, because there are students EVERYWHERE. I can't even pee until I'm dressed, because my bathroom is outside off the porch.
7:30 the gong rings again and the students go in for breakfast. I continue to fumble around my house for my coffee, muttering "I don't wanna go to school today" to myself. In case you haven't noticed yet, I'm not exactly a morning person.
8:00 is when the assembly is supposed to happen. It usually doesn't. It usually starts around 8:30, which is when it's supposed to be over and classes are supposed to start. I trudge the 20 yards from my house to the school, followed by my loyal puppy Freddy, and stand in the back stifling yawns. The kids sing, have a prayer, all the teachers give long-winded speeches about discipline, the kids sing again, there's the National Pledge in there somewhere, and I get jealous of Freddy, who is practically snoring at my feet and try to subtly check that I have all my clothes on right-side out. At around 9:00 we finally get to classes... sometimes.
Half the classes on the schedule don't actually have teachers, so they get skipped, and more often than not the kids are pulled out of other classes to either spend more time in the garden (which I'm sort of okay with) or to rehearse for whatever: a pageant, a holiday, graduation which is half a year away, or even just opening a meeting with a song. I have not been very good at hiding my eye rolling at this. My Counterpart even has me look away from the students before he'll tell me classes are canceled again, because he knows the face I'm about to make.
For the next three or four hours, I'm either in back-to-back classes, or waiting for the other teachers to do something. I do a little bit of everything. Every few minutes I hear "Miss, are you busy?" and so begins my next project. Then we have lunch, which all the teachers eat in the cafeteria with the students. It's chicken and rice. Every day. I go chat with the cooks in the kitchen, who tease me about being a white girl eating farine, or about my longing for vegetables.
Sometime around 1:00 or 2:00 we go back to classes. Half the students have decided not to come back to class. We rally the rest and attempt to hold classes until they get pulled out again for more rehearsals. On Thursdays and Fridays in the afternoons the kids do sculpting and weaving. I love that part. I wish the kids could do more things like that.
The work day is over between 4:00 and 5:00, and I can finally go back to my house for a few minutes. I say a few, because at 5:30 I go over to my host family's house and take my sisters for our evening walk, because it has finally cooled off enough that I can go outside without an instant sunburn, but still gives us half an hour before the sun goes down.
When I get home from that, if my house has electricity, I'll do some stuff on my computer (like writing up the blog posts I'll put up next time I have internet) or watch a movie or something. I like to clean my house in the evenings because not only is it less hot, but like I mentioned before, I hate mornings and am incapable of functioning as a human being then.
If I have no electricity, then I bathe, sweep my house in the dark, and climb under my mosquito net to read a book by flashlight in the dark until I fall asleep.

At some point in all of this, I have to take care of the plants growing on my porch, keep tabs on what's going on at the gardens, do all my reports, and take tons of pictures of everything.

Freddy follows me for almost all of this. If I have to talk at assembly, he'll come up on stage with me. If I'm teaching, he's in the classroom sleeping under the blackboard. If I'm in the teacher room, he's sitting on my feet under the table right in everyone's way. He's my furry, bug-covered shadow.

On weekends, it's all laundry, cleaning, hammock time, and movie nights with the students.

I'm never really "off" though. Since I'm one of the only adults living on campus, if the students need anything, they come knock on my door at any hour of any day. If one is sick, I may need to take them to the clinic in the middle of the night. If they're bored, I have to help give them something to do, or they might just come to talk to me for awhile.

A staff person at the last VAC meeting made the suggestion that volunteers use vacation days to "vacation at site." AHAHAHAHA no. That's not a thing. At all. Ever.

Should you be PC?

Before I applied for Peace Corps, I half-applied a hundred times. I'd look at the site and the postings, get about halfway through the initial application (the easy part) and then never submit it. I wanted to be a Peace Corps Volunteer, mainly for the cool stories I'd be able to tell when I'm a crazy old lady with dementia (I might already be there...) but I wasn't totally sure I was cut out for it.
After all, two years is a really long time, and I'm not even going to pretend I don't have commitment issues. I have panic attacks just signing up for a cell phone plan, let alone leaving everything I know and being stuck somewhere for two whole years. Plus, what if I wasn't really as tough as I thought I was? What if I couldn't hack it? I mean, I probably could, but looking at the washout rates, maybe only hardcore philanthropic hippies with military-level toughness could really do it. I don't like people that much, I'm way too high-strung to be a hippy, and some days I have all the toughness of a baked potato. Still, if I was going to do this, I was going to have to really do it. I would have to stick it out the whole two years. I couldn't come home before my time was up. How embarrassing would that be? I'd have to explain to everyone every time they said "I thought you were going for two years...?"

For those of you considering Peace Corps (or already on your way in) does any of this sound familiar?

I finally bit the bullet and sent in the application. I'd looked through all the postings, and most of them seemed do-able, except one hardcore sounding one in Guyana. "Oh well," I thought. "As long as they don't send me there I'll be fine." What are the odds of that? So I checked the "Send me anywhere" box and said "oh god please don't make me work with kids" (in a more professional sounding way) in the "preference" section, and sent it off.

For those of you who have read more than this one post, you'll know I got sent to Guyana where even the "Environmental" volunteers work almost exclusively with kids, because there's nothing the world likes more than to laugh at any self-assurance I manage, and slap me back down to the high-anxiety gutter where I spend most of my existence.

Still, somewhere was better than nowhere, so I shrugged, packed my bags, and headed off.

When I got to staging, I had another horrifying sense of "I am so not cut out for this" when I walked in and met the rest of my cohort. They all seemed so confident, and one, Ellen, looked like she'd stepped right off a Peace Corps recruitment poster. Seriously. When PC Guyana staff had called me for a phone interview, they'd asked questions like "do you go camping?" Heck yes I go camping. I'm a camping pro. When I was a kid, my retired-Marine dad used to judge our forts in the woods. Camping? Check. Then there's Ellen, Miss "I was on a research project in the middle of nowhere in Alaska or something and we didn't even wash our hair more than about once a month" (my memory may be a bit exaggerated, but you'll have to forgive me because every time she opened her mouth my insecurity skyrocketed). Suddenly my camping looked like a six year old sleeping in a tent fort in the livingroom. Not exactly hardcore.

The one saving grace was my newly assigned roomie at staging, Sam, who confided that everyone else scared the crap out of her, too, and she was wondering if she had maybe bitten off more than she could chew. Yay! I'm not the only one!

Okay, so now that I've exposed myself to be neurotic, flaky, a little bit misanthropic, and wildly unsure about myself, I'm hoping that at least one other person is feeling like I did. If you are, and you've been reading this whole blog just to try to figure out what Peace Corps is really like and if you can actually last the two years, now that I'm almost done here, let me try to give you a better idea:

First, the necessary disclaimer: Peace Corps Volunteers' experiences vary wildly even within the same country. Most of the volunteers here live on the coast, and they might as well be on Mars as far as how closely their lives relate to mine. Kirsten, from my own cohort, is able to travel in to the PC office every Friday. I'd rather stick a fork in my eye, but that's just me personally. I'm going to just highlight some of the things that seem to be fairly across-the-board for at least the hinterland volunteers (meaning those of us who were cast out into the middle of nowhere).

1) Bugs are in your food. What do you do?
            A) If you answered anything like "what kind of bugs?" "How many?" "Maybe try to scoop them out?" or anything other than just straight up "ewww" that's a good sign. There will be bugs in your food. It's going to happen. Sometimes it's ants, and it's not so bad, sometimes it's little worm things, and sometimes you're not even sure what the hell it is but you seriously debate still eating the food anyways. Sometimes the bugs are the food.

2) How easily grossed out are you?
          A) "Not easily" is really the only good answer. My first week at site with my new host family at my permanent site, they asked me to rip the tongue out of a freshly dead cow. My first DAY with my training site host family, they asked me to eat a worm as big as my thumb. Many of you hinterland volunteers will only have a latrine, not a flush toilet, and it WILL be filled with cockroaches. Lizards and bats will come into your house and poop on EVERYTHING. Welcome to Peace Corps Guyana.

3) There is no one around, your cell phone is dead (or doesn't work), and you have no TV or internet. Relaxing day? Or torture?
          A) This is going to happen a lot. Be really sure that you're happy in your own company. Entertaining yourself is a huge part of Peace Corps. Being alone even when you're in a crowd of people is also an everyday event.

4) People are staring at you and whispering. How uncomfortable does this make you?
         A) If you're offended by the attention, Peace Corps is not for you. If you're uncomfortable about it, that can be okay (That's what I am, usually, and it hasn't messed me up too much), and if it makes you feel like a rockstar and you love talking about yourself, great.

5) (For the ladies) How much is it going to drive you nuts to be married off or advised to have babies?
         A) Yeah, this is going to happen all the time. I've never had so much attention paid to my uterus before. I don't think my gynecologist is this interested. If you can handle this with at least a tiny amount of grace, you'll be fine. If you're totally comfortable telling people to mind their own beeswax, that'll work too. Gents, for you it's going to be people just encouraging you to leave little half-Guyanese babies behind everywhere you go. Don't do it. Even if they come up with an adorable name for it. In Nappi, they keep suggesting Thomas make lots of little "Tomlets" before he goes. I applaud the name, but still not a good idea. (I've told him whenever he DOES have kids, if he doesn't refer to them as "Tomlets" we won't be friends anymore.)

6) How much do you need privacy?
         A) If your answer is "at all" you're pretty much hosed. You're not going to HAVE privacy. Every minute of every day, you're going to be on display. Your host siblings will invade your space on a regular basis, the local children will peep through the cracks in your house, or your neighbors will comment on the amount of toilet paper you seem to be buying. Are you okay? Are you having explosive diarrhea? You probably are, they decide. They'll discuss it with everyone else, don't worry. As someone who loves privacy, this was my biggest fear, and is still my biggest aggravation (along with the bugs.)

7) Are you a hypochondriac?
          A) DO NOT DO PC. You are going to get sick. You will probably pick up some parasites. The real illnesses are bad enough. Don't add imaginary ones. Plus, if you're a hinterland volunteer, your access to medical care might technically be within an hour's reach, but it will take you anywhere from 2-12 hours to actually get there.

So basically, there's no way to know for sure whether you'll make it two whole years. Lots of people leave, for lots of different reasons, and most of them are completely unforeseen. What will completely unravel one PCV will be no problem for another. In my case, it's mostly come down to sheer stubbornness.

My point is, if you're thinking about it, you might as well try it. You'll never know otherwise.


Okay, this post is waaaay late. This happened back in like... the first week of March, but I got a little out of order when I tried to catch back up and post about everything all at once. So, for reference, this was before Rodeo but after Carnival. Whatever; doesn't matter.

What is Phagwah? If you want the religious explanation, you'll have to google it. What it is for Amerindians, is an excuse to throw paint and water at each other, and a day off work/school. Really, what more could you want?

When you can't even get them to behave for a simple picture...

So we did just that. I had to check on a sick kid in one of the dorms first, and the students were nice enough to let me do that BEFORE they attacked, but that was as far as their self-control allowed. On my way back, I was ambushed with a bucket of water and handfuls of paint powder.

Resistance is futile

For a few hours, the kids chased each other around until everyone was a living rainbow and shivering from being sopping wet.

Cleunicia's shirt is pretty much my motto when I do anything stupid (so most of the time, really).
I was not the only teacher caught up in the fray
All that glitter, and it's his eyes that sparkle 
I always promise the kids I won't put up unflattering pictures, but I don't think Shena has ever looked less than lovely in a picture, even messy and covered in paint!
Tennie and Bathsheba, shivering but sunshiny
Who could resist these faces?

I can't tell if this is a candid shot, or his next album cover

Thursday, April 26, 2018

My kids are weird

Actual conversation today with some of my students:

Student: "Miss, why don't you have any kids?"
Me: "I don't want any."
Student: "But you should have one. Have at least one."
Me: "Why? I have like... forty of you. What do I need another one for?"
Student: "No, Miss, you should have one of your own. Just one to try."
Me: "You don't get to try having kids. Once you have one, you're pretty much stuck with it. Plus I'd have to take care of it. That sounds like a lot of work."
Student: *pause*
"Fabian can babysit."

Fabian is a twenty-year-old male student who just got volun-told to babysit my non-existent children.
Good luck. Even I'm afraid of those little monsters.