Fighting Poverty with Passion
These past two months of my term (May and June) have been a pretty crazy time. I had two wonderful visits with my family and best friend in Mid-May. It was so great to be able to show my mom the places and things that make me enjoy this city. The energy in this city is exciting and can be overwhelming/ exhausting at times which they quickly found out.
beignets at Café Du Monde,
taking a tour of the swamps and seeing the gators,
eating the fine seafood,
listening to the collective songs and sounds of Frenchman,
singing along to our favorite tunes at Pat O’Brien,
getting down to brass bands,
exploring some of the many museums of New Orleans,
stopping by my favorite watering hole—Kajun’s,
shopping at the French Market,
on the ferry at night,
riding on the streetcars.
My May quickly went from fun, eventful memories with my family in New Orleans to unsuspectingly flying home to for my Grandfather’s funeral. It was nice to be around my family during that time and I am so appreciative of AmeriCorps for helping me get home by purchasing my flight and allowing me leave on short notice. So thanks to all who had a hand in helping me get home at that time to be with my family!
When I returned from home I quickly had to get back to the grind. I went with all twelve of our team members for training in Baton Rouge on Bridges Out of Poverty. It was a great time to be with everyone as a unit and bond together. Following that week was the National Conference on Community Service. This was an interesting conference to see the number of people that are involved in similar work as me.
I have also got the opportunity to house sit over the past few weeks in the neighborhood known as Holy Cross in the Lower Ninth Ward. It was so nice to get to experience what it is like living in an active neighborhood in a double shotgun style home. It was nice to have a large kitchen to cook in and share the space with fellow VISTAs at time.
To conclude this two months of was my birthday this past weekend. I had such an enjoyable time relaxing and celebrating the last year of my life. I got to go to the Pearl River Blues Blueberry farm where they had a Blueberry Festival. The activities where full of listening to blues music, picking blueberries, eating taco, enjoying an open mic, playing card games, and camping underneath the stars.
It is hard to believe that I only have 61 working days left as an AmeriCorps VISTA Leader at Tulane University Center for Public Service in New Orleans, LA. What am I doing next you may be asking? That is a good question. A question I still don’t know what the answer to is. I really need to focus on myself and what the next career step I want to make in my life.
-Cassie Lemon, Tulane AmeriCorps VISTA Leader, Tulane Center for Public Service