Returning Home After The Peace Corps: Interview With Andy

What’s it like to be home after two years as an English teacher in a developing country – Kyrgyzstan in this case – as a Peace Corps Volunteer (PCV)?

Andy has been back in the US for about two months now and says it “…has been great overall. I have a large, noisy family, so I was a bit overwhelmed when I first got home. Lots of people asking me questions and talking thorough my little picture presentations.”

And people’s reaction to Andy’s Peace Corps experience has been very positive, though such an experience is often hard to relate:

“My family is proud, my friends are proud. Everyone is happy that I’m back. They’ve all been fairly inquisitive about life in Kyrgyzstan, but you can never really convey the whole experience. Sometimes people just don’t know which questions to ask or where to begin. “Kyrgyzstan. What was that like?” I get that one a lot. “

And socially?

“My girlfriend was also a PCV in Kyrgyzstan, but she’s from Chicago. So now she lives in Chicago and I live in Virginia. This has been the most difficult aspect of coming home, I think…I’ve seen quite a few of my Peace Corps friends since I’ve been home, though, so it’s been easy to connect with people who have lived the same lifestyle and gone through the readjustment process. D.C. Is a great place to go if you need to be around returned PCVs. I went to a party the other night and met returned volunteers from Benin, Zambia and the Dominican Republic. D.C. Is crawling with returned PCVs, and they’re all really nice.

Returning home does entail looking for work again, and Andy reports that being unemployed for a month has been “sort of demoralizing… but I think I’ve found something, so that’s good.” Expect at least one more report from Andy on his advice for future PCVs…and perhaps just a little something on his new job.

Andy let me know it’s alright to post his email address in case anyone would like to contact him with questions about his experience – you can reach him at kyrgyzstandy at gmail dot com.