Some censuring Readers will scornfully say, why hath this Lady writ her own life? Since none cares to know whose daughter she was or whose wife she is, or how she was bred, or what fortunes she had, or how she lived, or what humor or disposition she was of? I answer that is true, that 'tis to no purpose to the Readers, but it is to the Authoress, because I write it for my own sake, not theirs. ~Margaret Cavendish in 1655
Wednesday, December 28, 2005
Christmas is lovely to experience in a Christian country. I was overwhelmed at the amount of stuff given and received (the malls were frightening), but I'm not sure if I want to become habituated to it. Talk about alot of rampant materialism! And everyone has so much stuff! It makes me want to weed out my stuff (that's my heart speaking and not my lazy butt!).
Well, I hope that everyone had a good holiday and I hope to see all my American friends soon.
Saturday, December 17, 2005
So, I'll catch up with everyone soon... once I've caught up on my sleep. Take care.
Tuesday, December 13, 2005
I probably won't contract a parasite. (I'm currently infested with pin worms! GROSS!)
I won't have black snot from the pollution and dust.
I will be able to eat pork and cheese.
I won't be able to wear extremely funky clothes.
I will freeze my butt off.
My work week won't start on Sunday, but on Monday. Therefore, I can say "Thank Goodness for Friday," instead of "Thank Goodness for Thursday," which doesn't have the same ring.
I'll be home for Christmas just like the song says.
There is probably more, but I can't think of it now...
Take care and I'll be seeing you soon.
Thursday, December 08, 2005
Please note, I was very calm when I wrote this and please don't worry about the bombs. It's ok, no one panic. All the exits are clearly marked....
As for my own leaving plans, the plane leaves on the 17th and arrives 30 hours later on the 17th. Confusing? Slightly. Will I be mildly insane from the travel? Definately. Since I'm arrive at 9 pm, Mom asked if I wanted to stop at Schmidt's for a bratwurst on the way home. We'll see... We'll see... A nice brat with a cold beer will be heaven on earth. Mmmmm... pork and cheese. Will this make up for the cold? Hmmm.... I'll think about it....
For this evening however, it is a post-GRE/good-bye Happy Hour for fellow B-5 Wendy. She is has finished her 6 month contract and will be leaving the 'Desh for good in the next day or two. First, she's going to travel around India and also other parts of South Asia before going home to Arizona. Sounds like a ton of fun! Good luck to her!
Thursday, December 01, 2005
Outside the auditorium, we walked back the two blocks to a larger road and tried to get a rickshaw. A group of well-dressed men came over to us and asked what we are doing there. We said that we had gone to the AIDS program and were going home (all this in English) He told us that it was a hartal and that we would have to take a rickshaw all the way to Banani. I whipped out my Bangla, informed him that we know about that hartal and that didn't stop us getting there that morning. He then told us that he would manage a rickshaw for us. He called one over to us and I asked the wala if he was going and the jerk shushed me and told the rickshaw wala that we would give taka 100 to go to Banani. I said that I was a cheap bhabhi and that I would not give 100 taka when the meter for a CNG was 60 taka (thus making the rickshaw price 40-50 taka for the same distance). I thanked him and asked which direction was Banani. At the next road was a ton of CNGs and rickshaws and I paid 80 taka to go where I wanted to (hartals equal baksheesh). I hate it when men tell me that they will 'manage' stuff for me that I can do perfectly fine for myself. However, since he was probably in charge and could hire local ruffians to break my knees, I decided that silence was the better part of valor and kept my mouth shut. But, I'd pay good money to give him what for.
As a treat to ourselves for sitting through multiple talking heads, we ate lunch at Pizza Hut. The week is done and yeah for the weekend!
On the 'Don't worry front': There was a bombing in Gazipur today and some people were killed, but they are still targetting the courts and justice system, so good for my foreign self.
Tuesday, November 29, 2005
So, with that said, I still have to come to work tomorrow and look cute in a sari. No rest for the weary or the wicked. Tomorrow is World AIDS Day and there is a big program (that is going to be cut shorted, due to hartal) and I gotta go, sit and look pretty. Ugh. All it's going to be is bigwigs saying the same stuff they say all the time. Maybe they'll have a good tea and snacks to offer.... hmmm... maybe I should take a big purse.... hmmm.... Hopefully, fellow intern Danielle will come with me and we can keep each other amused. Keeping my fingers crossed.
Sunday, November 27, 2005
Friday was a jammie/recovery day from the Turkey indulgences and then Saturday, we shopped. First was Sally Ann's Salvation Army for waffles and tea. That's right, I eat waffles at the Salvation Army. And go shopping there. I spent an large amount of money on stuff that I always wanted and now will ship home. Then we met up with Angela and Brandy for shopping after lunch at the American Club. We hit Aarong and I really went a little nuts at the jewelry counter. 3 nose rings and 4 earrings later (with one of them for Mom) and a cup of tea later, we went to Bata (shoes). I came home with two pairs of shoes that actually fit (ok, one pair better than the other, but they were really cute!) and then we went plant shopping. I didn't come back with anything (which is considerate of me considering my black thumb) and then Brandy had to go home. However, Carrie and Angela were up for more shopping (I was drooping, but hung in there). So off we trotted to Melange for comforters and pillows for Carrie. By then it was 8 o'clock and no dinner. Angela and Carrie took pity on my drooping self and fed me Japanese for dinner. Yeah! Rolls rock! Then off to home to look at our loot and go to bed to actually make it up the next morning. Ugh.. I'm still tired from that shopping!
Ok, here is the deal... I'm coming home for Christmas. I think that I will be living with Mom and Dad between Christmas and grad school starting, but a job would be a good thing. I'm hazy on the details, so I'll keep you posted as soon as I have a clue.
Take care and be safe in this holiday season.
Tuesday, November 22, 2005
What this means for me.... I might not be in the office until Saturday, unless I can bribe a rickshaw wala to haul my butt to the office. Then, it will be peaceful, quiet and I can play music at any level I want. Oh! Don't forget the long lunch at the American Club, since there will be no cafeteria service here in the office and the AC is not known for their swiftness.
So, thanks for the notes of condolence on a lost love. I appreciate it greatly. I might be here tomorrow or not... Inshallah.
Sunday, November 20, 2005
This weekend I was a social butterfly. I was supposed to go to the German Club, but cancelled out at the last minute with fatigue! I was so stinkin' tired of a whole week of work, that a snack at the American Club did me in. The next day I went shopping with Helyn and bought some beautiful cloth to make into western clothes. Then I ate the roll that did me in the next day. That evening, I made my way to fellow bideshis Eric and Danielle's house for Eric's 30th birthday party. Carrie and I made it home about midnight and that night, I was up a few times. Then the next day, I competely crashed and stayed in my jammies all day.
On a more personal note, Rana and I have broken up. This means that I have no current plans after my contract with Save ends in December. I'm thinking about grad school in the fall, but there is alot of time between now and then. I would really like to get more experience in development, since I would really like to be employed once I leave grad school and most jobs require experience. Catch-22 on that one. So, if you have any ideas about my future, please feel free to write, but keep in mind that I won't necessarily follow any/all advice.
Wednesday, November 09, 2005
Carrie and I stayed in Dhaka for the entire holiday and for about 2 days didn't get out of our jammies. We both read, watched movies and worked on "The Good Girls' Guide to Dressing in the 'Desh". This was a ton of fun when we made our pictorial debut on "How to Wrap a Sari". My bright pink sari with the funky purple and yellow paisly print was decided upon as a 'photo-friendly' sari and the snapping took most of the day. I think that we are going to give this to Peace Corps Bangladesh and maybe offer it various Embassies and High Commissions for their welcome kits. Who knows what'll happen?
As for now, I'm looking for a job. Any job that will pay in US dollars. My internship/consultancy is ending in 5 weeks, so unemployment is lurking not too far away. Ugh.
OK for now... I'll try to remember to bring my camera to work and post some pics. Take care all!
Monday, October 31, 2005
This evening should be fun! PCVs Molly and Scott have Friend Micah here from America (land of pork and cheese) and they will be staying the night at our house. Tomorrow they will be going to Srimongal to see the tea gardens. How lovely is that?
And the highlight of this blog? I will have the next week off for Eid holiday (actually a combo of Shob-E-Quadar, Eid-ul-Fitre, a weekend, and National Solidarity Day) I will be staying home, cleaning, reading, maybe cooking and writing. Everything will be closed down, so that will put the kibash on shopping and other good stuff like that. That reminds me... need to hit the grocery store on the way home. Take care, have some fun and see you campers next week!
Sunday, October 23, 2005
On the family front - no one is in the hospital! Grandma D went in after coming down with a nasty virus that freaked everyone out. She made it home after a few days and so did Grandma F, after her bout with a nasty bacteria.
That's all that's newsworthy in the 'Desh.
Sunday, October 16, 2005
Roomie Carrie is again back in the 'Desh and hopefully surviving her first day back at work. Troy and Miranda are getting settled into their new digs next door and making it a home.
On the home front, Baby Jilli is home from the hospital and cute as can be (proof is in the pic)! Grandma F should be home soon to a very clean house. Mom, Dad, Cousin Adam and his son Brice went to her house and attacted one evening, so now Grandma can't get re-infected.
Sunday, October 09, 2005
As for Rana, we had a pleasant time while he was in Dhaka. I made some kitchori (a rice and lentil dish) and almost had the spices right. I didn't make any if-tar stuff, but we picked some up at a nearby roadside stand before it was time. Tasty, but not homemade by a long shot. It was nice to just run around the town with him and just run errands.
As for my trip to Rajshahi, I found out yesterday that my office is changing the Durga Puga holiday to Thursday, so a three-day weekend is for me. So, I'm getting bus tickets and finding a place to stay while in Rajshahi. This should be fun, since this is the first time that I have been back since I was a volunteer.
Also, Roomie Carrie should be on a plane flying back to the 'Desh on Thursday (arriving here on Saturday), after a month hiatus. It'll be nice to have her back.
Thursday, October 06, 2005
This is the breakdown of Ramadan, as I have observed:
- A person wakes up about an hour or so before the break of dawn. This is to eat breakfast and to pray. You know when this happens, due to each and every mosque either turns on a siren or employs boys to beat drums, microphone "Wake up, it's time to wake UP and eat breakfast!" around the neighborhood. Officially the fasting starts when you can tell the difference between a black thread and a white thread.
- Then you go back to sleep until its time to really get up and get ready for work. Alot of village people work from sunrise to sunset, so they just stay up.
- Then the waiting begins. Naps in the early afternoon are more prevelant, since that makes the time go faster and you had to get up early to make breakfast (more common for women who do all the cooking, that is).
- The cooking for if-tar starts. If-tar is the breaking of the fast. A woman must cook without tasting her food. Or if she does taste it, she must spit it back out and rinse her mouth out - without swallowing anything. That is one reason that I don't mind going to houses early, since I can be used as a taste-tester.
- Finally, when a person can't tell the difference between a black and a white thread, it's time to eat! Generally, people start with a glass of water or dates, since that is what the Prophet did to break his fasts. Alot of times, people will just take to the water and dates and then go pray, come back and finish their if-tar.
- A couple of hours later, dinner is served around 11:00 at night.
- The process begins again.
Something that is considered auspicious is to read the entire Qu'ran during this holy month. Some mosques will have it read over the loudspeaker for a couple of hours every evening, for those who are illiterate. That can be annoying for the non-Muslim living in the neighborhood, along with the siren and/or drum at 3:30 in the morning. I think that the drum about put me over the edge last year. This year, however, I didn't hear a single thing in my house. I am darn happy about that.
Wednesday, October 05, 2005
Today, one of my Bangladeshi colleagues told me that he is going to Washington, DC for a conference and I'm trying to help him get all 'Westernized'. In other words, I'm writing his resume, seeing what he's presenting and un-Bangladeshi-fy it. I'm thinking that this should eat up some time and I like trying to up the professionalism of my colleagues. I'm hoping that I can talk him out of a flower picture with "Thank you" for the last picture on the PowerPoint presentation. For some reason, that is really popular here. Since he is actually presenting something there, I'm also going to let him practice and give constructive feedback. I have found that there are very few good presenters of PowerPoint and even fewer in Bangladesh. I've been to some that had every bell and whistle present and then some. The best part - I know he will appreciate it! He already told me so. I just hope that he feels the same afterwards!!!
OK, Grandma F is in St. Rita's hospital now and is getting treatment. Keep her on the prayer lists.
Sunday, October 02, 2005
Ramadan should be starting soon, so my work schedule will have to change. My work week will still be Sunday thru Thursday, but the hours will be 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. with lunch for only those who want/need it. Then after the Eid vacation, the hours will be extended to compensate for the month of reduced hours. I'll see how that goes. I just might keep the regular hours all the way through, since I won't be fasting. However, I'm going to be subtle and try to get if-tar (breaking of the fast) invites as much as possible. And I'm going to learn how to make boot, which is a very tasty lentil that is always served for if-tar. You mix it with puffed rice (rice krispies) and some deep-fried veggies and enjoy. Yummy!
In family news, Dad's cousin Mark's ex-wife passed away last week. I think that she was only in her 40s, so it was very unexpected. So, please keep Mark and Austin (their son) on your prayer lists. Grandma F is still in the hospital at the moment and Cousin Jamie will be induced Friday (unless baby wants to make an earlier appearance), so she'll be making her way to the hospital too.
Other than that, everything else is quiet. Take care all.
Wednesday, September 28, 2005
As for myself, RPCVs Wendy and Craig are having a belated birthday party for Craig on Friday. Then on Saturday, Wendy and I will be shopping for Wendy's Eid gifts and just to have some girl time. I think that we'll have a good time. Then it'll be back to the grind on Sunday.
An update at home... Grandma F. is in the hospital for dehydration. She got a nasty flu bug and lost too much fluid. Hopefully she'll get springed from the hospital soon. Keep her on your prayer lists. Take care and everyone have a good autumn weekend.
Sunday, September 25, 2005
Ta-da! He looks sweaty since it was hotter than blue-blazes and no fan when I took this picture.
As for people in my life, the new foreigners of Danielle and Eric went to a fancy, smancy party and I wrapped Danielle into a sari that was very nice and really funky. Here are the folks that I'm talking about to the side. They are really a nice couple. He is doing an internship at ICDDR,B hospital (he plays with pooh and chlorea) and she is working an internship at the same place as me... thus, how we met.
Roomie Aliza left Saturday for America bright and early, so the house is very quiet. That makes PCV Helyn's visit even more wonderful than normal! She is here is Dhaka today and a little while more. Her husband PCV Peter is still in Naogoa and the neighbors promised to feed him well. Helyn says that she generally comes home from trips to find that Peter has gained weight from going next door and eating all the time.
Today, I chatted with the head guy at our office and he gave me some infomation about universities for grad school and put the thought of Public Policy with an international slant into my head. I'm checking out some of the universities he suggested and seeing if it's something that I can get behind and do.
Wednesday, September 21, 2005
Good news! Rana is on the 1:00 bus to Dhaka, so he should show up at my house by 6:30 at the earliest. Yeah for me!!!
Take care and have fun, kids!
So, I finally made it back to the 'Desh in one piece. I had fun wrapping my luggage to prevent theft. Check out this on the left! It's like Saran wrap, but for your bags. It only cost 100 Rupees per bag (1:47, USD:IRs) and then you can fly with a little more piece of mind. The wrap makes it a bit harder for theives to get at you stuff, which Dhaka Airport is infamous for. Another fun thing I saw, happened while I was on the plane. I was sitting in my seat on the plane, minding my own business. I happen to look up and I see an inch-long cockroach scurrying around the doorframe in the cabin. I pointed it out to my seatmate and we both chuckled. I think that maybe I have lived here too long when cockroaches in airplanes don't really surprise me. Just a thought...
As for other fun things, I went to College Road to buy some medical books for my colleague. I don't know what I was expecting, but I think that I was expecting a more western style of book store than what I found. However, the guy featured in this picture was really helpful in finding the one book I ended up buying. He gave me a little stool to sit on after I had to go on a 2-km hunt for an ATM (ok, maybe not 2K, but it was really, really hot out!). He had a guy who worked for him hoof all around to find the book from other medical book shops in the surrounding area. Very nice of him. And then, after we finished our business, he got me a taxi and a decent price back to my hotel next to New Market. What a nice guy.
As for today's agenda, there isn't too much, with the hartal and all. The Awami League and 11-party alliance are having a hartal today to protest the rising petrol prices. So this makes the office pretty much dead. I think that tomorrow will be somewhat normal. Rana is coming in on Thursday (tomorrow) and leaving again on Friday. Bummer, but it can't be helped. He thinks that he can come for a longer stay after Ramadan break starts at school. Since I'll have to feed him during his stay here while he's fasting, I'm going to learn how to make kitchuri. This is lentils, rice, spices (tons of tumeric) all cooked together. It's kinda like comfort food here ~ good for rainy days and when you're sick. I hope this works out for him. Take care and leave comments! ~Laura
Monday, September 19, 2005
Mom was right, it's the touts that bother the heck out of person here. Every tourist looks like a mark. This isn't meant to scare off anyone who wants to visit Kolkata, in fact the opposite! I just want people to be more aware when they travel and to do it safely. Just be aware of the touts of India - they'll try for every Rupee in your pocket.
Well, I hope to leave for the airport by 7 this evening to be ready for my 9:40 p.m. flight. Damn Biman Airways and their inability to plan! grrr.... Ok, campers, off I go to drink another lassi and maybe to have a snack. Talk to you from Dhaka!
Saturday, September 17, 2005
As for the trip over, Biman Air was completely Bangladeshi to the nth degree!!!! They didn't announce anything, they were 2 hours late and people didn't understand the meaning of a que. The airplane, I firmly believe, was older than me and decorated in that garish orange floral pattern from the 60s/70s. You know the one. I think that I prayed every second that I was in that plane. I will probably be doing the same when I get back on it to return to Dhaka. The fun and joy of 3rd world airplanes. The best part was the fact that the stewardess' opened the pilot's door whenever they wanted to during the flight. While we were landing, the door to the cockpit flew open. I guess they aren't too worried about terrorists here. As always, I had my purse ready to whap the crap out of anyone who tries to mess with me. grrr.....
I haven't done too much siteseeing, since that isn't too much fun alone. The next time I come, I plan on bringing someone with me. I don't know how Friend Ebony can just travel around by herself and have the best of times. I think that I need that other person to get me out of my shell.
Oh, well... back to shopping. I'm going to pick up some beautiful teeps (the stickers that go between your eyebrows) and see what kind of saris are out there.
Tuesday, September 13, 2005
Other than that, everything is going along the same. Roommie Aliza will be leaving next week, so it'll be back to me and Carrie again. However, starting 1 October, Miranda Bhabhi and Tron Bhai (known to Americans as Miranda and Troy) will move in next door and become our neighbors. That'll be nice to have neighbors that are normal. Though, I have to say that the Afgani diplomat's family upstairs are really nice. The only weird neighbor I know is across the entryway from us and it's just the one auntie. We're thinking that she has a couple of mental issues, since she just kinda wanders in and looks through stuff and asks crazy questions and likes to touch our hair. Then her sister comes in and says, "It's time to go home now," and off they go, hand in hand. How funny!
If there are any requests for Indian stuff, just let me know! Take care and I'll let you know how the trip went later.
Monday, September 12, 2005
Wednesday, September 07, 2005
The next day, we met with all of the field people working with the community. They were very nice and there was even a guy from Rajshahi! He grew up next to the Collegiate School where I was posted while a PCV. Small world. I got some paperwork done and just enjoyed the scenery. Same thing happened the next day, but with dinner being had at a colleague's house. His wife went nuts that day and cooked beyond belief! She made 2 chicken, 1 veggie, 1 goat, 1 egg, 1 chop (kinda like a fried meat pattie) and 1 fish dish with pullou rice(really expensive rice with spices and raisins in it). Then she made a pudding for dessert. She won't have to cook for the next two days with all of the leftovers!!!
The next day we left at about 4:30 and I made it home by 11:00. I stayed up and chatted with Carrie and finally had to call it a night at midnight. It's so sad when a grown woman has to have a bedtime and can't stay up late without consequences. Oh, well, what can I do?
I will try to finish my roll of film and get the pictures posted. Cross your fingers on that one. Maybe a digital camera wouldn't be a bad thing.... Food for thought.
Thursday, September 01, 2005
Things have been piling up around the office. I've got marching orders to visit a project out in the field and I'll be leaving Saturday around noon and I'll be getting back Monday evening. This project site is in the 'haor' which is a swamp/marsh area of the country. We'll take a car for a couple of hours and then take a boat to get to the town. The lady in charge asked me if I could swim.... so I'll be packing everything in Ziploc baggies before I put them in my backpack. Then, I'll be writing various reports on subjects I have very little knowledge about, so let the fun begin!
The only other minor buggaboo is the lack of a good tailor. I have some lovely clothe that I'm scared to give to a tailor, since I'm thinking he'll butcher it. It won't fit, is my main concern. Or they'll murder it somehow. Ugh. Tailors aren't known for their good work here and I left a perfectly wonderful tailor in Rajshahi. He was my second best male relationship in Bangladesh (my Honey Rana rated #1). I miss him so much. I'm thinking of mailing my clothe to him, but I just need to bite the bullet and go to a tailor here in Dhaka. Its so frustrating! Its almost as bad as buying ready-made clothes in the States, with the dressing-room blues and the horrible florescent lighting.
Well, I'll fill you in on the field trip later! Take care.
Sunday, August 28, 2005
Work is going on ok. I have a 128-page report to edit for gross errors, but I'm actually enjoying the task. The funding request, that made last week such a beast, has been couriered off to Global Fund and peace again reigns on my floor. Yeah for that.
OH!!! I met little Nosim Sama (Rana's middle sister Lata's baby girl) and she has the sweetest face! She has really deformed hands and feet and legs curl up way more than a baby's should (from the spina bifida), but she's still a cutie. I took some pictures, so when I actually finish the roll, I'll try to get it on here. Cross your fingers!
Well, I have to plan for a mini-vacation for the middle of September, to keep my visa valid. I'm thinking a quick plane trip to Calcutta for a long weekend of good eating and shopping. I can buy my Eid gifts there and maybe a little something for myself. :) There are so many cute clothes in India - it's rather disgusting! Let me know if anyone has a suggestion about the vacation. I'm up for a little spoiling. Or just something beautiful to see and experience.
Sunday, August 21, 2005
As for the family, everything on that front seems to be forming a new normal. Mom's Cousin Lee Ann just got back from a lovely trip to Alaska and has only lovely things to say about it. I think I'll be smart like her, and only visit in the summer! I really hate the cold, so its someplace I will never in my right mind move to. Visit, yes; live, no.
More family news: Grandma F. is on the recovery list and seems to be in good spirits. Aunt Lisa seems to be coming 'round. Cousin Jamie is moving soon to the farm and kudos for her... moving 2 kids, herself, a small menagery of animals (I couldn't keep track if I tried), her man, keeping sane and being pregnant to boot. She amazes me on a regular basis. Mom and Dad are being good Aunt and Uncle and helping out. And everyone else seems to be working at something or another. Yeah for the family!!!
And on the friend front: Princess Megan is getting back to her new normal also. She doing great in her treatments, but if you don't believe me, just click on her page under Links. Sweetie is going through a rough patch. Boy trouble is never a good thing. I wish I was home to order in pizza and Ben & Jerry's with him and just veg. Lay like broccoli. Also, a belated BD shout out to Friend Alison. She is once again 25. You go for the gold, honey!
Take care folks!
Wednesday, August 17, 2005
Sunday, August 14, 2005
Other good news is that Friend Allison got a new job and moved to new digs! Good for her!!! Check out her good news by clicking on her link on the left side of the screen.
Well, today is a half-day hartal (strike), but Roomie Aliza and I both came into work. I forget what the hartal is about, but that's normal for me. It might be over the mobile court that is going around and looking into all the food factories and resturants and closing them down if they are unhygenic or putting crap in the food to make cheaper to produce or something to that affect. The factory owners and restauranteers are protesting it, even though the mobile court has found really disgusting stuff, like fertilizer in cookies and spoiled food being mixed with good food to disguise the fact that it's gone off. This means I'm only buying foreign cookies from now on!
Take care and enjoy sanitary restaurants!
Wednesday, August 10, 2005
I think that my cookie consumption is never going to level out at this rate, let alone go back down. Ugh.
On a happier note, so that you might actually want to visit here again, 58 fresh-faced Peace Corps Trainees flew into Dhaka yesterday. There was a meet and greet at the office last evening and I caught up with older Volunteers and met the newbies. They are so young! And not jaded in the least. Give them time and experience and they will be!
Take care folks and send some good news if you got some to spare!!!
Monday, August 08, 2005
New Roomie Aliza is dealing well with the rain, so that is a good thing. I think that she is getting bored, but that is just part of living in the 'Desh during the rainy season or really any season for that matter. As an only child, I can pretty much entertain myself to a large extent. Only after living here can I honestly say that I have felt boredom. This only happens when your house is clean (or as clean as your going to get it), the laundry is done, there is nothing to cook and you've read every single book in the house, including the Bible and dictionary, you have nothing to write in your diary and you're not tired enough to take a nap again.
OK, campers, enjoy being hot and dry and entertained. Take care.
Thursday, August 04, 2005
*Found out that Friend Princess Megan has Hodgkins a week before her wedding. She's doing good and really positive, so a big yeah for her! She's made promises of pics of the new pre-chemo hair-do, so I'm looking forward to this. This, of course, will go next to her wedding pics that shows the world that she is super-shundor (beautiful).
*On the 22nd of July, my Honey Rana's middle sister Lata had an emergency C-section and gave birth to Nosim Sama who has spina bifida (of the two forms, the bad one). It's questionable if she will survive. This is what you get in the thirld world... prenatal care that sucks if you can even get any. And if she does survive to adulthood, she'll have survived not only her disability, but also a culture that is not open to such things (most people who have any physical/mental disabilities are either locked away or are beggars).
*Then on the 2nd of August, my dad's younger brother, Uncle Fred, had a heart attack and died about 12 hours later. He was 8 days short of his 54th birthday. I can't hardly imagine what the rest of my family is going through. Today is the viewing and tomorrow is the funeral. Please keep his wife, kids, grandkids, mom and other assorted family members in your thoughts and prayers.
*On top of all this, I really don't like my job currently. Small potatoes in the great scheme of things, I know, but I spend 40+ hours a week doing it, so that's a chunck of time I'm doing something I don't like. Not cool, so I'm going to do something about it. As soon as I have a plan. Glitch. (Shhh... don't tell Mom, she gets upset when she thinks that I might, potentially, be unemployed!)
So, campers, count your blessings one by one. Until I can see through the fog, it's cookie time for me. Ugh... my ass is going to be so huge, it's not going to be funny.
Sunday, July 31, 2005
Aloha friends and family. I've been not busy at work or play, so not alot to report on as of late. For those concerned, I'm not near the flooding in South Asia. Its happening in Mumbai (Bombay) and that's around 1,000 KM away from me the other side of India. As you can see, I'm neighbors with Myanmar (Burma), Bhutan and Nepal and surrounded almost completely by India. To the north of Bangladesh is the Indian states of Assam and Darjeeling, where the most expensive tea in the world is grown. Bangladesh also grows a medium grade tea in Sylhet, but it's not at a high enough altitude to grow the really good stuff. However, Rajshahi (where I was posted as a PCV) grows some of the best mangoes in the world. That also goes across the border into India and the Malta Mango.
Well, folks, that's your geography lesson for today. Hope this clears up where in the world I am. And for the pre-'71 grads, Bangladesh was East Pakistan from '48-'71 and India's state of East Bengal pre-'48. That is why Kolkutta (Calcutta) is in the state of West Bengal and it has no East counterpart. Confusing? You bet. But if you're in the neighborhood, just swing on by! Houseguests are considered a gift from Allah in Muslim households, so that means you always can get a snack and tea at least 85% of the time here. Thank goodness for that or I would have starved in Rajshahi!!!
Sunday, July 24, 2005
So this is the promised sari picture, courtesy of Roomie Carrie. As you can tell, it is heavy gorgeous and just plain HEAVY!!! The sucker must of weighed 20 pounds. I needed help to get into a standing position. Somehow, I just don't think this 63, 000 taka (1,000 USD) sari will be bought by me anytime in the future. But it's fun to look! I still need to go to Mirpur 11 and look at the wide variety of wedding sari shops that the neighborhood is renown for. I'll keep you all in the loop when that happens. Have fun! ~Laura