Thursday, January 18, 2007

Leaving the PC behind and coming back to Timor.

Hey y'all.  Things are good and busy. 
Some peace corps volunteers have started to return to Timor for visits and to look for work.  They include Joe and Sarah C who used to live on the island.  Sarah M also returned last week to start work with Tais.  My group is making a serious come back!  oh yeah, that is a challenge.
Cedric and Jen came back from their vacation and are now married.  Para benz!  Just as my house sitting gig ended for them I found a great house in town.  Sarah m and I just moved in this week and are enjoying are new place.  It is in Villa Verde and is an old Portuguese house which is great because it has revolutionary things like good ventilation and passive lighting.  It is also got colored concrete floors, a good layout, high ceilings, and ac.  I think we were real lucky on this one.
All the foreigners are coming back from vacation now.  It makes me real depressed when everyone of them asks what I did as I have not much to say but I do like their stories.  I am quite jealous.  I have just realized I have been here over 6 months with no vacation.  I gotta do something about that.
Work is great.  Water and Sanitation at Plan is going strong and we now have close to 40 staff, most who are dedicated to the emergency work.  We have made some changes and looks like we will separate the emergency and development programs here.  This will work out well and keep things from dragging down the development program.  It is also good for me as I will now be running the emergency water and sanitation side.  We are still discussing it though as no one knows how long the emergency will last, in fact Timor has basically moved beyond the emergency.  My first week at Plan the Metinaro refugee camp had 3L of water per person per day.  Now we are at 17 or 18.  That is good news and is one indicator that Timor is moving away from the emergency.  Although no one knows what could happen once the election starts later this year..  We will all just have to wait and see.    
I will write again soon.  Hope y'all are well.  take care. lv jesse    

Jesse Shapiro
Water and Sanitation Engineer
Plan International
flipflop...not a shoe...a lifestyle.

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