peeling in africa

[written 6pm Wednesday March 12]

i just got home from work. or maybe i should say i just got back to the resort from the embassy. yesterday we were told that all incoming travel to the mission has been cancelled (due to warmongering among you know who) so we made it in the nick of time. we also found out that security has been heightened due to the recent spat of car-jackings in dar, targeting ex-pats. the director of the health office told us pretty abruptly that he’d prefer us not going out, especially at night. i was pretty bummed since i’ll be here all day saturday and was planning (in my head) a mini-holiday.

catherine mentioned that she’s heard car-jacking has been a problem before and that they probably wouldn’t tell us low-ranking TDYers (temporary duty employees) if something really was up, so it might just be a cover for something more interesting. there’s actually a person at the mission who used to work for measure some years ago, and she says going out shouldn’t be problem–in fact catherine and I may hang with her family some tonight or tomorrow, which would be cool.

so the interesting thing about these trips is that it takes a few days to start getting useful information out of people, which means that I’ve only now begun doing significant work on the database. and since i think catherine hasn’t enjoyed my working right up until 6pm on friday (during past trips) she basically wants everything done for tomorrow so we can start doing some training. this means i had today and will have tonight to do whatever i think i can do.

i was a very unnatural color red for the last several days. today i started itching and peeling. in a few days i’ll have brand new face and people back home will think that i spent spring break on a beach in st. martin.

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