well I finished "training" if that's what you call it.
For me, I learnt a great deal more from the networking than I did from the training. I'm sure that there's parts of training that will come in handy to me down the track, but as it is with these things I'm sure I won't recognise the moment until well after it happens. Like the moment after you just stepped in dog poo with bare feet you remember firstly, that you don't like stepping in poo, and secondly that usually you would wear shoes to prevent the gross "oozing" effect it has as it slides uncomfortably through your incy toes.
No for me it was the networking, I met tens (I'd say hundreds, but there was only 100 of us) of people all with amazing back stories, future assignments and objectives. They're all doing this for different reasons and expect different things from it. I can barely remember all their faces now, let alone their names (praise the lord for stalk book an its wonderous ability to join faces to names) [except when those rude people put more than one person in their ruddy profile photo! Now is not the time for sharing the limelight!].
It came as a shock to me (and it shouldn't have) that so many people have either worked in or studied or wanted to get into the Development industry. Don't get me wrong. I've known all sorts of people that have studied international development and I have heard about development in the news all the time. I didn't actually realise, however that THIS is was it actually means!!!!! [apologies my dear friends...please stop gaping like codfishes]
That shock however was not quite as big as when I realised that most people (those that I met at any rate) were all very forward, strongly opinionated and dominating. I know that not everyone falls into that personality category obviously. However it does seem that there is a common characteristic among the people that are throwing their lot into this adventurous challenge.
I walked away feeling I had known these guys for so long. Like we had been at uni together or re-building a grass hut. No, we'd just been through lectures on Buddhism and condom wearing together, but I have a feeling that we have many adventures yet ahead.