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Life Arts    H4'ed 8/29/15

Ratty Roach-Driven Stories Not Written to Mom Regarding Peace Corps and War

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Mom wanted to be a teacher and someday a principal. She became a homemaker, living her dreams through her kids' college and post college adventures.

These are some Peace Corps stories that I did not share with mom via my generation's internet -- aerograms.

I waited till I got back to mom's couch, where without psychoanalysis she relished hearing stories till 2-3:00 AM.

During the Vietnam War, I "served my country" by enlisting in a platoon whose moniker was "India UCD 23."

Urban Community Development groups had the Peace Corps' highest desertion, or drop-out, or failure rate. All of them had been sent to Latin America. We were the first urban forces to go to Asia, to Bombay, now Mumbai.

The Peace Corps wanted our model group, to be different, to measurably succeed.

Consequently, during training we were closely psycho-analyzed. Only deep into my Peace Corps service did I learn that my psyche report said something like, "Very young and highly idealistic. Could be crushed by the harsh realities of India's slums."

With that baggage, a few stories.

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Dwayne served in the Peace Corps in the slums of Mumbai, India, worked several Habitat Projects, and was on the start-up team of the California Conservation Corps. He has a Ph.D. from Claremont Graduate University, has been a builder, teacher, (more...)

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