Reverse Time Machine

For the first time in a long time, I’m sitting at my computer (that works, thanks to Tyson for fixing the keyboard that has been broken since!), with unlimited online access (we paid in relation to how much time we used in Cameroon), at what I call “home” for the time-being, in Texas… and this seems like an all too ordinary, lame and unexciting in comparison to the past two years of blogs filled with inspiration, a process of learning, aggravation, gratification and love that I received from my home in Cameroon. I just finished reading Angel’s blog entries too (Check out his experiences and entries at:, as he COS’d and finds himself now in New Jersey. What a strange whirl of feelings you get when you’re texting once again with PCVs all around the country- except this time, texts are unlimited, and you know that you would have to take a plane to see some of them again. We will remain connected through what now feels like a dream. As my postmate, Tim Hartman, said it, “I don’t feel any reverse culture shock but it sure feels like we’ve been through a reverse time machine!”

As amazing as vacation has been, I’m glad to be back, to fully embrace being back, and actually, it kinda feels good not to have any travel plans but driving down to Houston at the moment. I’m craving stability and I’m getting closer and closer to it.

I most definitely have a more positive outlook on life as I know it, and I pray that this never changes.. a few times a day, I am reminded by the smallest things that if I can eat three times a day, and sometimes dessert, life is pretty good! I notice that, or it seems to me that so many Americans get caught up in things that don’t matter all that much, that they get used to wanting, wanting, wanting… and forget to appreciate all the so-called little things. Furthermore, for me personally, it feels like such less to help my sister with the dishwasher (dishwasher! haha) or to pick up something from the store for my mom. This may come partly from my newfound respect for elders, or just a different take on responsibility and what needs to be done. Or probably part of me is enjoying any sort of collectivity or solidarity- in a place where you don’t even know most of your neighbors, where people don’t come over and demand food, where no children offer to help you clean the house, where your mode of transportation is a spacious car rather than a junkyard car packed with 7 kids, 2 babies and 3 goats in the trunk… I can admit that I jump at the chance to be apart of a group or to connect with someone whenever it’s possible. I knew everything was going to be this way. And I know that I will adapt once again.

The few people in Cameroon that have e-mail addresses are keeping in touch with me pretty well, which is nice. Of course, my son Franck has already lost his cell phone that I gave him and never gets into his inbox that I helped him set up!! Just like anyone with a teenage son, it drives me nuts and even more so because I have no way to yell at him for all of this; I miss him, and every part of our relationship. The good times and the bad, frustrating, angered times, were all worth it to see him become who he is now. My biggest fear is that I won’t get to better witness his growing up. Every few nights, I have dreams about getting into his school to see him, or trying to find him. This is hopefully what the rest of my Cameroonian family will do in country, and through them will let him know still how angry I am for not hearing from him, and in turn update me. I’m thankful that Cameroonians are so “together” with those they love, so that I don’t always have to feel so far away. The people that hold special places in my heart will also always hold me in theirs, and this gives me a peace of mind.

Because I need a peace of mind as I find myself staring at a computer for hours on end, searching for the perfect position for me, so that I can jump back into working and paying bills and everything else that people do! I will spend many more hours searching- I’m terrified of doing something that doesn’t make an impact or a difference, and I won’t quit until I get to do that.. But I will find something… with the prayers and blessings of the entire population of Bare, Cameroon, what else can I do but rest assure that I will find the perfect fit??…

About Tara

Tara received her degree in French and Communications before jetting off to serve Cameroon for 2 years with the Peace Corps. She has forever since been inspired to serve in humanitarian projects around the world. She's a writer, tour guide, business owner, property manager, wifey, dog mom, and traveler. Tara lives in Dallas, Texas, where she's happily married to the tech genius who keeps her website pretty.