Thursday, March 8, 2012

Doing Research in Lusaka

I'm in Zambia, where I'm doing research on everyday water technologies and household water use. Actually, so far, I haven't done that. I've been finishing some prep work, writing abstracts and consent forms and basically having quality time with my computer all day, every day. But that's ok, because quality time with the PC by a pool in sunny Zambia, or at a table in the bar under the cover of the thatch-roof in stormy Zambia, is still a pleasant change of scenery from Basel. Week one of my trip is mostly administrative and about making connections. Week 2...hopefully more researchy. :)

I'm staying in a dorm, but some people here are camping. It's less than half the price, and comes with all the same amenities, minus the bed. If I owned my own camping gear, I would have camped. What's better than lying in a tent and listening to the crickets sing?! Nothing that I can think of. Last night there was a yard full of tents and motorcycles out by the pool. This morning they're mostly gone again, except for one or two long term guests. One Dutch guy is camping his way through Africa, fully busy with his web design business. He's been on the continent 7 months, and is in his 3rd country. I'm a little jealous.

Most of the other guests are here for a few days to a few weeks. Several are working at a hospital nearby. There's an 18 year old English guy who is here for his gap year and who is cooking for himself for the first time. He tossed a pot of failed rice the other night, and--same meal-- held up a pot with about an inch of oil in the bottom and said, "If you were going to fry vegetables, how much oil would you need?" So, after that, we agreed I'd help him cook some food that's edible. Yesterday was a moderate success, with pasta, sausage, mushroom sauce and vegetables. And it even looked pretty!

Back to work I go. Also, if you haven't already seen it, I have finally added a video here (thanks to Gregg and his solutions).

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