Wednesday, August 30, 2006

The Blog Is Back

Wow, it's been a long time.

So much has happened.

I got sick, then got healthy again. I'll spare you the details.

The air conditioner in my office got fixed.

My computer got "repaired."

Those are my excuses for my long absence.

In the time that has elapsed you have missed the stories of...

...a trip to Nahlap Resort Island!

...a hike around Sokehs Island!

...remarkable sunrises!

...the Navy SeaBees who are currently drilling a water well right next door to my office!!!

Other than that, things haven't changed much around here. Yawn.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

The Profound and the Mundane

Saturday morning we left the house at 8:30 and drove down south to catch the boat to Black Coral. Black Coral is a tiny reef island about two miles from Pohnpei off the southwest coast.

We spent the day there with about 12 friends: eating, snorkeling, playing Scrabble and relaxing. While snorkeling I saw one shark (about 4 feet long) and three big, ugly groupers. Of course, there was the usual gang of gaudy colored fish, but they were bigger than usual this weekend.

I really enjoy the boat ride to and from the island. Looking at Pohnpei you cannot see any trace of human life. Just the massive mountains covered with jungle. And then looking out at the ocean you see waves and clouds that have traveled thousands miles across the empty Pacific before encountering this island.

It is surprising that Pohnpeians aren't all poets; its such a unique beauty.

* * *

On Sunday afternoon Rohaizad and I were sitting in the nahs outside our house reading books and eating steamed bananas. We saw a motorboat with six guys come across Sokehs Bay to go through the mangrove channel next to our house.
Suddenly, while driving at full speed, the boat whipped around and around in tight circles, tossing two guys off. One of them seemed to be injured, maybe a broken leg? He had to be floated to shore by his friends. The boat must have been broken, too, because it had to be towed to shore, too.

* * *

This morning while I was running at the causeway, ANOTHER cat got run over by a car. I've nicknamed the causeway Dead Cat Alley, because there is at least one dead cat every month. This is the second one since I arrived on July 27. Uck.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Tan Dune Dan

Folks, including myself, may often complain about the inefficiency of things out here in the Pacific, but there are exceptions. For instance...

Tuesday morning I went to re-register my car and the entire process took ten minutes. That includes filling out the paperwork, checking the car, going to the treasury to pay the fee and getting a new registration paper. Wow! That would never happen at a DMV in the United States! And they even gave me a new name: Tan Meyer. I must have been in the sun too long.

On another note, we had a Singapore National Day party in our nahs last night. There is a student from Carnegie-Melon University doing an internship at the College who is from Singapore. So now there are two Singaporeans on island including Rohaizad. Finding ingredients was a bit like a scavenger hunt. We had to go to several stores to find garlic and we managed to track down the last two (elderly) onions on island. So we had to run the National Legislature to pick up the two little onions from a lawyer working there.

We had a good group of people over and had a good time.

Today Janhabi arrives back here from Canada. Finally our group of friends will be complete again!

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Fill Up and You Don't Have to Pay

You may be surprised to learn that there is a point at which I WILL wash a car. I reached that point yesterday.

Before I will wash a car, two criterion must be met:

1. The car must have actually changed color.
2. The car must belong to me (sorry, I won't wash your car).

My car fulfilled both of those criterion yesterday.

After being gone for two months, my white car had become green and black. There was actually mold (the black kind) growing on the mold (the green kind).

It was a rewarding experience to scrub the mold and watch it run off the car. Ahh.

So my little bread box is sparkling white again, at least for a couple of days.