"So if I am able to preserve this writing of mine…I would like you to give it the title 'House of Glass.'"

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Between Indonesia and America

TravelCollage-ID.MY.SG.TH.VN

Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam.

Back in the United States

I’m back home. After twenty-six months of Peace Corps and three weeks of travelling around South East Asia, there is American soil under my feet again. Service ended on June 5, and I arrived at the the DFW airport on July 4.

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One Month Remains

Tropical Landscapes

One month remains in my Peace Corps service. I’m just now allowing myself to start thinking about what these last two years mean as a whole and what it will be like going home. Until recently, I’ve refused to let myself acknowledge that Peace Corps service would come to a close. In fact, it was as late as October when I still thought my COS date was mid-July, not mid-June. I had made myself completely oblivious to the light at the end of the tunnel.

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In-Kind Rice Payments

Stacked riceThere are still so many things I haven’t shared with you about Indonesia. I hope I can give you enough small tastes of my community to show you what it is like.

Nothing says ‘Indonesia’ more than my teachers getting paid in-part in rice. As a part of their monthly salary, all teachers at my school receive 10kg of rice – packaged (and presumably) harvested locally. This amount of rice costs about Rp 80,000 and will feed a family of four for about two weeks. To show the value of this rice payment, cash salaries at my school range from around Rp 600,000 per month as non-civil servants, to around Rp 2,500,000 per month as civil servants, and as much as Rp 10,000,000 per month as a senior staff member.

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Autonomy: A Younger Break in Java

There are so many things I want to share with you about Java.

The teenage years in American culture are a mad search for autonomy. It comes in milestones: the driver’s license, a few opportunities and technical changes at 18, followed shortly by college. It is granted to children sparingly and comes in large, inevitable doses later.

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Protected: Warnings and Disregarding Them

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Protected: Calibrating Fear: Why was there so much excitement regarding such a small eruption?

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Protected: The Public Outreach Model: Observatories and the local community

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Protected: The Raung Lens – Piecemeal answers, anecdotes, and pictures to what I do at the volcano observatory

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Protected: SO CLOSE YET SO FAR: Installing temporary seismometers in new parts of East Java

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