The Fourth of July Party was great...All 45 minutes of it until the rains came! We all made such wonderful food and the decorations were great and truly the setting as well was so nice in beautiful Chindia Park. But as nature would have it, we were soaked to the skin and had to abandon our day's plans. I spent the remainder of Saturday together with my gazda family and we talked, ate and drank, played games and surely a good time was had by all. The rest of the week was a long, long wait until Wednesday since watching the memorial service for Michael Jackson was bittersweet, especially since it is now a chapter in my life that is closed having grown up with him and his music. I especially loved the letter from Miss Diana Ross whom I had the occasion to meet in 1986 back in RI. When Wednesday finally did arrive, however, we were rewarded when a-la-The Academy Awards, we all individually walked the red carpet (literally) and we were so very pleased to get confirmation of where we would be living in the next two years of our service. FYI: I will be in a small village called Brusturoasa, in the Carpathian foothills, on the border of the Moldovan region of Romania. It's actually part of Transylvania, but you knew that I would get there someday, didn't you? I will live with the mayor and his wife and their small children in an idyllic place and teach middle school and help with summer projects and camps. I couldn't have asked for a better situation to live out my Peace Corps dream! The English teaching and technology and cultural training are needed here and the children are so excited that they will be getting an American teacher. They and their current teacher already sent me today a huge surprise box of the most wonderful hand-made dolls, a tapestry, pictures, letters, a picture of my new home made with grasses and leaves, a basket of sweet little chicks, a sheep's wool mask sewn together with leather and made of various colors of coat, another funny traditional clay mask, a CD of the area, and to top it all off a golden horseshoe. I am blessed! It was a beautiful day in the neighborhood and I look forward to meeting all of my new students and the people of Brusturoasa. They rock already!