Monday, July 30, 2007

Amparaaaaa, Amparaiiiiii

I’m here. I really am. Whoa.

It’s amazing to be back in Ampara. Who knew I would actually feel like I was indeed coming home. From seeing old familiar faces, going to the same markets, feeling as frustrated by dial up as always, adjusting (way faster this time than last time) to a swiss keyboard where the z and the y are switched (and imagine what that is like with someone with my name) and just knowing where I am in the 2 kilometer radius of Ampara Town; this feels good.

I am not one of those people who when in a new place needs to go out and explore and know every single street. My younger sister is that way…that is what she has been doing with London in her ten weeks there which are almost up and I didn’t do diddly about directions or scale of the city or knowing where I was when I was there. Why that feels inconsequential to me is a mystery. I think I am a curious person but knowing about the direction of m surroundings is just not of interest. Which I wish it was since I tend to get lost a lot and it would be nice to know where I am going and I think it is some sort of a mental block that I need to work on (behind on the list to the following mental blocks: numbers are scary, rocket science itself is not really rocket science, science is scary, learning tamil is impossible, economics with numbers instead of words and theories is still scary). I need to just sit with myself one day and talk myself into a directional sense. There are ways in which to uncondition ourselves.

So, I am here and I want to write about work but I did something silly and actually inform work that I wanted to write about work. There is no official policy that can be found within my organization about blogging about work and of course I would not do stupid things like publish internal information but I am doing cool projects and want to write about them. As of right now, there is no moratorium on my writing on this blog and I think I will just do so till I hear otherwise and if in doubt, will ask if something can go up or not. If anyone has any guidelines out there (aid world specific please….we are a different breed of blogger. It is easy for people to say to separate your personal and professional but when you work in the field, it’s near impossible to do so. This time, unlike last time I was blogging in SL, I actually do want to talk about work. I have other aid workers reading this and I want to get opinions and comments and suggestions etc from others and to share any best practice type situation we might have going here). Anyhow, blog I shall for now till I hear differently.

It has been two and a half working days since I have been in Ampara but lots going on.

Want to give a shout out to two blogger buddies o mine, both in London, The Buddha Smiled and House Negro, both of whom I hung out with when I was in London for a week and it was awesome. With TBS, I always have a good time, he was an occasional guest at my dinner table and House Negro is a new friend with whom it was easy to just sit on Charlotte Street, eat good food and shoot the shit (I would love to pretend we were talking about techy geeky computer stuff (mental block on techy geeky stuff which I would like to remove), but we weren’t. More interesting things actually. I don’t know lots of Australian Pakistanis (ok, I don’t know any), and hearing about that diaspora community was good for me since it was different.

One big difference that I do need to comment on....the office has 'high speed' internet. Higher speed than dial up and my computer doesn't freeze up when I open up my blog so I can indeed post with relative ease.

Also, I do want to draw everyone's attention to my little cluster map thing on the right hand side....I have NOT checked my blog since I got to Sri Lanka so I have NO idea why that dot tha tis now obscuring this fair little island is that big and I seem to have got my first hits from Central America and Africa!! And other European places and American places that I don't recall seeing before...

That is it for now. More soon.

Hugs and kisses.


Clemmie said...

hooray, an update! am so glad to hear that things are good, although I can never really tell from your blogs! (not that that is a bad thing). hmm now i have started there is lots to tell you, will write you an email your roomie xxx

Iqbal Khaldun said...

I'm writing a book 'Australian Pakistans - 2 years of history'. Should be published in a few years' time.

Was good to meet in London, albiet briefly. Hope Lanka is fun and a success. We should swap mental notes some time, first on my list is trying to remember my mental notes... Which reminds me I think 'study' was on there somewhere.

Durga said...

I come across ur blog after like a year and OMGooosh u are back in Ampara?!?! I was in Colombo 2 weeks ago...but didn't go to Ampara.
I'm so jealous!!!

Keep us updated!

Lots of love!!!

Alka said...

quote "I am not one of those people who when in a new place needs to go out and explore and know every single street."

Yes, and that's why you are the best house guest. (others should see the post with Amsterdam label)... though there are many reasons to get lost in this city other than just not going out of the house. for example, watching harold and kumar in the right mood.