Costeño hospitality and patios

All of Peace Corps Colombia’s sites are in the coastal area of Colombia (la costa), where the people are called “costeños.”  Because of the intense heat and humidity, the culture is a bit different here than in the interior (where Bogotá and Meddlín are), so just keep in mind that any references I make here […]

First impressions

We rolled into our small town, Palmar de Varela, in a van stuffed with 14 people and a whole bunch of luggage.  4 of us were going to be dropped off in Palmar, and the rest would continue on to Ponadera. Very quickly after one of the Peace Corps staff members said, “This is Palmar,” […]

Packing: the total package

Peace Corps has very specific luggage requirements.  Knowing this, and how terrible of a packer I’m known to be, I was very nervous about getting all of my stuff in.  As it turns out, the luggage requirements are very generous.  Two large bags can be checked. Their total linear inches can equal 107″.  The largest […]


I have lived in Minnesota for 10 years.  In Wisconsin for 7 before that, and in South Dakota for 11 before that.  These are all states with 4 seasons.  States with a very distinct winter.  And especially Minnesota.  While some years I’m not quite on board, I’ve learned to love winter.  I’ve learned to love […]

Packing: the wardrobe

Fact: I’m terrible at packing; I have never not over-packed. Fact: I own a lot of clothing. These two facts made the thought of packing for Peace Corps service really daunting. Fact: A lot of my clothing is really bright and filled with pattern.  Fact: I love blogs written by crafty, fashionable women.  Fact: When I […]

2015: the year of Gerty

The Peace Corps welcome book for Colombia states that “Volunteers are required to receive prior approval from the country director to ride bicycles in Colombia.”  A year and a half ago when I interviewed for the position, this wouldn’t have been anything I really took notice of.  At that time, I rode my bike as transportation, but […]

Things are getting real real

My Peace Corps group has a Facebook group.  It’s mostly been a great asset, as we’ve been able to connect, ask each other questions, and support one another through all the tedious steps that it takes to go from Peace Corps Recruit to Peace Corps Volunteer.  It’s also been ridiculous at times, with a lot […]

The cat’s out of the bag

I never realized what a relief it would be to give my notice at work.  To have my managers, who are concerned about my future, know what my true plans are.  But when I had the conversations with my manager about my resignation and last days, I really did feel a weight lift off my […]

Mountain View

A little about me!

Hey! I'm Brianna Hope, a born & bred midwesterner embarking on an adventure as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Colombia. I am clumsy, I spill a lot, and I share most of my interests with 6 year-olds.

Follow me on Snapchat: alabrianna


The content of this website is mine alone and does not necessarily reflect the views of the U.S. Government, the Peace Corps, or the Colombian Government.


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