Holding a baby goat in a maasai village

Learning a thing or two about raising kids (ba-dum-bum) from the Maasai
Monduuli, Tanzania | July 2007

My name is Megan Humphreys and I am a Peace Corps volunteer serving in the Coast Province of Kenya. You’re welcome to call me Megan, or Meg, or any number of other things; I’m used to people contorting my seemingly simple name. My tribal names are Mariamu among the Swahili and Mapenzi among the Giriama. recently finished a bachelor’s degree in psychology at a liberal arts college in upstate New York. I miss the autumns there terribly. I grew up in Charleston, West Virginia but consider my “real” home to be Washington, DC, where I attended high school. I am the youngest of three: my half-sister Jennifer still lives in WV; my brother is a ridiculously talented chef in San Francisco. I have a pet hedgehog named Rex – or rather, had; my best friend Sarah is his “foster mom” while I’m in Africa, but the two of them are so in love I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to separate them again. I can pick up quarters with my toes. I can do part of the Lady Gaga “Bad Romance” dance and recite the first 20 lines of The Canterbury Tales in the original Middle English, but not at the same time. I have been to 20 countries thus far – including 4 in East Africa – and intend to visit all of them before I die (even the not-terribly-friendly ones). Travel is my passion. Although I consider myself a competent traveler, I’ve nearly missed my flight because I went to the wrong airport … twice.

In my 0.05 seconds of free time, I like to write, hike, cross-stitch, ride horses, bake muffins, and peruse empirical mental health journals. I enjoy political discourse, books about the Crusades, and “Shark Week” on The Discovery Channel. My goals in life include obtaining a PhD and a scuba-diving license, although not necessarily in that order. I have visited the graves of both Hannah Arendt and Saladin; they are both heroes to me in vastly different ways. I was one class short of being pre-med but I wish I’d minored in anthropology or African studies. Were I not so desperately in love with psychology, I’d like to pursue travel writing or international law. (Hell, I might still pursue travel writing as a hobby, if not a career.)

At college, I was a senior member and secretary of a 24/7 peer-to-peer crisis counseling hotline that also plans and runs various mental-health/advocacy-related events such as depression screening and a Take Back the Night march. I’ve also been involved to varying degrees in the Amnesty International local chapter, Darfur Action Coalition, Human Rights Club, Psychology Student Union, Writer’s Society for Peer Editing, Peer Health Education Group, and the Yarn Club (I crochet).

I believe that none of us has the power to change the world as individuals, yet all of us must try to do the best we can nonetheless; as a collective entity we may achieve something yet.

What else would you like to know?