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Winning IvyPrez Idol Can Get you Far

25 Mar

Well, he was voted IvyPrez Idol a year ago by IvyGate, and this year he may be World Bank Prez.

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December in Washington

31 Dec

31 December 2007

Hard to believe but once again the end of the year snuck up on me! My wish for 2008 is that it goes by slowly! Unless I am not traveling because Washington is a boring city and I want time to fly when I am stuck here. After 2 months of daily discoveries in Malawi and 2 weeks of pampering in Ireland, my lifestyle screeched to a halt.

Métro-boulot-dodo as we say in French, except that I don’t take the metro. I walk to work (the second part), which is eminently boring at this point because nothing is happening. So boring in fact, that all I have to do is catch up on stuff I was too busy to do over the summer or while in Malawi. Tragic. The third part (dodo) is working well for me – especially since every other week I catch another cold and fight it with Nyquil (Hello. My name is Janique and I am a Nyquil-olic), which knocks you out for 8 hours.

To kill time, I watch movies. Like just before coming here I watched “Enchanted,” which ends on a happily-ever-after note – totally normal since it’s a Disney movie stealing clichés from fairy tales – good for the soul. Before that, I returned my apartment keys since I moved on Saturday and have a whole new set! I new my efficiency was small, but I realize it better now that I actually have to walk more than one step to go from the couch to the sink, the bathroom, the table and even my bed. I am exercising more! One resolution done – yeah! My second resolution – and last because you don’t want to overdo it – is to socialize more… I have been pretty good in the first half of December.

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Year in Review – 2007

28 Dec

What was I doing when and where? Here are the answers to all your questions

January

The year started really well since DC was enjoying a very mild winter and we were in t-shirts. When the cold weather was on its way, I flew to better climates: Thailand, Lao PDR (hanging out with Nanda), Cambodia – 3 weeks of heat, sun and Asian food. Delicious!
February and the rest of the family coming

My Adventures in Malawi

26 Nov

This post is composed of the emails I sent to my friends during a work assignment in Lilongwe, Malawi.

CHAPTER ONE — 9/10/2007 — Hello From Malawi
CHAPTER TWO — 9/19/2007 — The Greenhouse
CHAPTER THREE– 9/26/2007 — Power Outage
CHAPTER FOUR — 9/28/2007 — The Media
CHAPTER FIVE — 10/02/2007 — Clumsy on 3 Continents
CHAPTER SIX — 10/09/2007 — Care Package
CHAPTER SEVEN — 10/10/2007 — P.S.
CHAPTER EIGHT — 10/12/2007 — Lilongwe
CHAPTER NINE — 10/19/2007 — Malawian Food and Water Stories
CHAPTER TEN — 10/30/2007 — South Africa’s Ubuntu
CHAPTER ELEVEN — 11/06/2007 — Little Things
CHAPTER TWELVE — 11/09/2007 — Tying Loose Ends
CHAPTER THIRTEEN — 11/20/2007 — From Maputo to Sligo
CHAPTER FOURTEEN — 11/26/2007 —  Sligo Part Deux
CHAPTER FIFTEEN — 12/04/2007 — First Snow

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CHAPTER ONE — 9/10/2007 — Hello From Malawi

I have arrived safely in Lilongwe on Saturday, but without my suitcase — very common problem apparently, but it feels strange to be wearing jeans on a Monday.

The guest house is very nice. I get to have breakfast with a view on a very nice garden, which includes a pond with fishes!! There are two channels on the tv, one mostly on Korea (which sometimes switches from English to Korean…kinda spooky) and a local channel (I might actually learn a local language!).

I hired a driver yesterday to visit Capital Hill (yes with an A, that’s where all the ministries are — ooohhh aaaahhh), City Center (where the office is) and Old Town (shops, though they were mostly closed because it was Sunday– I am not in America anymore!). We went to the market and then I spent a couple of hours on my own at Crossroads to eat a chicken burger (that’s what happens when people drop you off at a western mall!) and do a little bit of shopping (waaaater and ice cream). No, don’t expect photos.

I had dinner at the Country Manager’s home and of course we had a barbecue (chicken and potatoes) and watched rugby (South Africa beat Samoa if you must know)… Life in Australia must be sweet. Anyway, his wife is very nice and his kids went to bed early :))

My first morning in the office has gone well. Lotus Notes (email) of course wasn’t working for a while, but the IT magician fixed it 🙂 The Media Monitoring and the Contact Databases are still missing but I am sure he can fix that too.

I also don’t have access to my personal address book so I had to dig out some addresses (people who don’t work at the bank, tsk tsk). I still don’t have access to my emails from before Tuesday. I think they were supposed to copy them on a CD and give them to me, but ???.

I am actually all alone now… looks like everybody went to lunch. Zeria said many brought their own lunches, but I don’t know where they are eating… maybe downstairs. I am hungry but have absolutely NOTHING to eat, very different from my DC office where I have soups, oatmeal, nuts, and tons of chocolate!! Skipping meals will do wonders for my curves. Thanks to Magda, I have some dark M&Ms with me, but they are at the guest house.

I should call the airport to see whether my suitcase has made it…