August 04, 2005

Bad Mood


The UN flight in Kindu to Kinshasa was cancelled. I will therefore not be able to flight back today. Apparently this stuff happens all the time. A humanitarian typically tries 3 times to get on a flight before he/she can take off.

The Kindu office just received a heck of a lot bigger generator. These are the things I expect never to experience here again:
-the whole electrical system to shut down every time a job is sent to the printer
-the lights to dimmer to the point of near dusk when we cook on the electrical stove
-the electricity to not come on at home during the three planned hours of the evening, two nights in a row
-the lights to come on/off, on/off 5 times in an evening
-the server to be restarted 3 times during the course of the day
-the overworked generator to travel around the room due to vibrations of the motor
-the cord of the generator to break off in the guards hands when trying to start it

I have high hopes for this generator!


Black River Eagle said...

Whoever is in charge of your infrastructure and logistics down there needs to think about using Solar Energy to help supply your electric power needs. There are all kinds of companies and organizations and initiatives on the African continent with lots of experience in installing and operating these systems in remote areas or places with an unreliable power grid.

If you enter the words Solar Energy Africa into the Google search engine you can see what I mean. Checkout out the February 25, 2005 posting on Timbuktu Chronicles blog "Solar Energy, Africa" or see the website of the Solar Electric Light Fund (SELF).

Of course, after installation of the system you will have to hire guards to keep the bandits from stealing the darn thing and then there are the problems with the monkeys and other curious critters gnawing on cables and stuff. Fuel to run the system is real cheap when it ain't raining though.

Congrats on the anniversary in the Congo. Shows real grit and determination to get the job done.

Beaver said...

hey girl ! Hang in there... think of all these Peace Corps volunteers who dream of taking a shower...

007 in Africa said...

Black River Eagle, that is very strange. Ive been saying that that would be the best solution for Kindu for the last three weeks! But apparently one would need a lot of solar panels to power up the relatively large office. Also, the security thing is a major issue: one of Sarahs neighbors got his piping (!) stolen from the side of his house. And theres not even any running water in Kindu.

Ya, thinking about Peace Corps volunteers always cheers me up. The poor suckers :)

Dan said...

Nice post. You always put things so eloquently...


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