Saturday, February 21, 2009
The last few weeks have been a little frustrating in terms of the car. A 4th car is out of comission until a part is shipped in from Japan and for a while, a 3rd car was in the shop. As the lowest person on the totem pole, I had to go without. This was okay for a while, because I just walked everywhere, getting a little bit of exercise in. The 3rd car came back after a week, so it wasn't too bad.
On Thursday the car I usually drive had to go up to the Haitian border for some project monitoring but was supposed to come back Friday afternoon. After waiting patiently until 6 pm, I finally started to ask around about the car. Sure enough, the manager who took the car was "not in good health" and "unable to drive back to Santo Domingo." The facts that the manager is from the town where the monitoring took place, has family and friends there and it was a Friday night, perfect time for knocking back a Presidente or two, are purely coincidential. Since I am going up to see Carnaval with a friend today (Saturday), he promised to have the car back by 9 am.
This morning before coming over to the office I called my coworker to make sure that he had come back and left the key on top of the secretary's desk, as we planned. He assured me that all had gone according to plan. I walked to the office (about 45 mins) and sure enough, couldn't see the key anywhere.
I called my coworker again to make sure that I wasn't going crazy. "Oh no, it's there. I put it right on the secretary's desk." I hung up and started looking again. No luck. I called him again. "Hmm, maybe I accidentally left it on my desk." So I poured through his office. Nothing. Finally, he admits, "Oh, I actually still have the key. It's in my own car."
So although he knew perfectly well that he hadn't put the key on the secretary's desk, he let me do all that work, pretending that he had. Sigh.
Thursday, February 19, 2009
In my opinion, it is a huge mistake to make Atlanta the US city of destination. I mean, it's not like Houston is a strategic city of interest to Angola, right? Yeah, I know Atlanta is the hub city for Delta and I clearly have a bias in favor of Houston. (In December I had the misfortune of Delta cancelling a flight, forcing me to stay in Atlanta.) Heck, there's not even an Angolan consulate in Atlanta to submit an application for a visa you will never get...
This looks like the start of a bad joke: How many NGO workers does it take to measure some wood?
Don Andres, surveying the damage
The final product, warts and all.
Wednesday, February 04, 2009
... as of February 2008, the budget allocated for the Santo Domingo Metro
was higher than the added budget of three important ministries and 5 pivotal
governmental institutions, including the ministry of superior education, science
and technology. For example, during the single month of February, the Santo
Domingo Metro received more than 231 million pesos (7 million US dollars), while
during the month of January, it received twice that amount.
I haven't posted in a while for a number of reasons.
Angola was so different for me in so many ways and I had so much to say about what I was seeing and experiencing. Couple that with little to no social life, an at times overwhelming sense of isolation and you get prolific blogging.
Here in the DR it's a little different. There is plenty that is new and different to me, but after Angola it sort of pales in comparison (with all due respect to the DR!) and the number of things that inspire me to blog. It's not the DR's fault. Frankly, my life is a lot less exciting here- in a good way. No more worries about being pulled over and put in jail because the cop doesn't understand my visa. My life here is calm. I go to work, go to gym and then come home. That's the bulk of it.
The last two months have involved lots of traveling for me- 10 days in Jamaica for work and then over 4 weeks at home in Houston for my home leave.
But I do enjoy blogging and for those of you who are still reading, thanks. I'll try and post more.