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Showing posts from August, 2012

10 months in the swamp, some observations

It seems that Christine is adapting easier to daily life in the Netherlands than I am. It is over two decades ago that I lived here permanently and things are very obviously different now. The country has changed, I have changed and I have a hard time getting used to (my opinion) the  rigidity and sometimes harsh insensitivity of this society, where it’s a positive character-trait to be as frugal as possible. Embarrassment of riches anyone?
I admire Christine for her light-heartedness and stoicism about the issue. Of course, she is not from here (I am, could that be the frustration ?) and she has very different 'fish to fry' right now; the character of the Calvinistic Dutch populace is not high on her list of priorities. She says, with some understatement, that every country has its pros and cons and that the Dutch (although they may be a little bit unusual) are no exception. Much like Tajikistan, she remarks, tongue in cheek. The food is bad, the attitude of the people hard…

And finally, almost a year later, the stories continue

Overlooking the Pacific Ocean from a deck of a friend’s house in San Pedro, CA (where we have set up camp for a two months) we can see the pelicans soaring over the Pacific and blue whales frolicking in the Bay. We contemplate life in general and our last ten months in particular. Very quickly, we have returned to our old Southern Californian days and ways. We catch up with old friends,  drive the notorious freeways as old-timers again and revisit all the great places of this incredible city. Life is a beach and San Pedro, LA, is as close to home as it gets.   It's now mid-August 2012 and it’s been roughly a year since we made our last blog entry; we feel compelled to share our adventures again with friends, family and followers (FFF ??) but where to start ….
Via former colleagues, papers and Google News we hear of violence in our former home, Khorog, the administrative center of GBAO in the Pamirs, which we left September 2011 after a year of volunteering. Drug lords are fighting …