Saturday, August 1, 2009

Swearing In

The speech I gave at the swearing in ceremony:

My name is Ashlee. I lived in Asigron for the last 8 weeks. In Asigron they call me Bendemai.

I'm happy that I am starting my Peace Corps service, but I'm sad to leave Asigron. The people there didn't just give me a name, but they taught me how the Saamakan people live and they gave me something that I will carry with me always. My family there and the people of Asigron took great care of me. They wanted me to learn many things, but if I learned slow they had a lot of patience. Everyday we laughed together. Sometimes we laughed because I didn't understand, but other times we laughed because I did understand. Everytime we were happy because we understood eachother. The made me feel like we were family. I will miss them very much.

I was one of 10 people who lived with Saamakan families during training. When we arrive in our sites we will thank the people of Asigron, Drepada, Victoria, and Hermansdorp. We will live better because we will know the Saamakan way of life. Thank you.

Now in Saamakan:)

Mi nen da Ashlee. Mi bi libi na Asigron dee 8 wiki de pasa. Na Asigron de kai mi Bendemai.

Mi wai mio bigi mi Peace Corps wooko, ma mi tjali taa mi go disa Asigron. Dee sembe ala an da mi wan nen wanwan, ma de bi lai mi unfa dee Saamaka sembe ta libi ku de bi da mi wan sondi mio tja ku mi-seei u te mi dede. Mi famii ala ku dee sembe a Asigron bi solugu mi bunu. De bi kai mi lai hia, ma ee mi bi lai teigi de bi abi hia pasensi. Hini wan daka u bi lafu makandi. So leisi u bi ta lafu bika ma bi fustan, ma oto leisi u bi ta lafu bika mi bi fustan. Hii ten u be wai bika u bi ko fustan u seei. De bi ta mbei mi fii taa mi ku de de famii. Mio hungi de poi.

Mi bi de wan u dee 10 sembe bi ta libi ku dee Saamaka famii a training. Te u doo a Saamaka, wo da tangi a dee sembe a Asigron, Drepada, Victoria, and Hermansdorp. Wo libi moo bunu bika wo sabi di Saamaka fasi u libi. Ganntangi funu.

1 comment:

  1. Dear Ashlee,

    Hope you are well. I just came across your blog . Great stuff! I am writing to you because I have launched a website populated with cross-cultural information about every country in the world. We will be looking to the web community to help do this with all the information being available for free. I was wondering if you may be able to help us out with the Suriname pages. We would love your input. Let me know if you would be open to this and I'll send along a brief questionnaire. Please also feel free to check out the website, become a member (it's free!) and add to the guide.
    Here is a link:
    Thank you for your time!

    Michael Landers
    Director - Culture Crossing