Showing posts from January, 2012

Taking a crap with words

Yes, that's classy. I feel like I have all these things to say but don't know how to organize them, so I'm just dumping everything I feel like into a point form post. I used to find writing in my blog cathartic, so here goes:
Since moving back into the camp, I haven't figured out how to upload pictures onto my blog. This frustrates me, because photo-journaling stuff was kind of neat hobby when I felt like it. Every Sunday I wake up hours before Louis, and it's been very frustrating to screw around with my computer to try and fix it. I had like one of the worst mornings ever. By 08h00 I was wishing it was 22h00 and I was in bed. Somehow I managed to get through the day, laugh more than once, and get work done. This is a miracle.The four stalls in the bathroom in my work building today were all working. This happens maybe 20% of the time. I don't know when I'll learn to check if there is toilet paper and running water BEFORE I go.I found a job that I want here…

Vomit Trees

Madagascar is full of a gazillion species of flora and fauna. Unfortunately for me, it's eucalyptus tree flower season. The smell of these trees is incredible. Incredibly disgusting. It's like a mixture of beer, movie popcorn butter, and vomit. Imagine that in a mixing bowl, smell it, and that's what you have. I thought eucalyptus was like all minty smelling and refreshing. These trees are freaking everywhere. I constantly forget until I'm punched in the face with this revolting odor.

However - I SO hope I can stay around here for a couple of years to smell these disgusting trees. Crossing my fingers on that one.

Gazillion Word Blog Post

I seem to start a million blog posts...whenever the mood hits me....I type most of it, and then just scrap it. I think that whatever I'm writing isn't:
interestingappropriatelegibleInteresting: I don't have much going on that's, like, interesting to read about. My moods are all over the place, I started the week off on the wrong foot with an afternoon migraine, work has been wacky, and I'm worried about my future. Ok, maybe some of it would be interesting, but that leads me to my next point.

Appropriate: There are potentially people I work with reading this blog (ok, I know there are, I just don't know who). Since I spend 12 hours a day at work, it's obviously an area where I'm going to have the most problems with. I don't feel it's appropriate to talk about work, or to go into too much detail about my job hunt. I've had some positive events and some negative moments. I'd like to write about them all (there would certainly be a few curse w…

Well, that was quick

Plane carrying Madagascar's Ravalomanana diverts to Mozambique
An aircraft flying Madagascar's exiled former leader Marc Ravalomanana home on Saturday was diverted to Mozambique after the Malagasy authorities ordered the jet to turn around, a spokesman for Ravalomanana

"Madagascar civil aviation has turned the plane around and it's been diverted to Pemba in Mozambique. It doesn't have enough fuel to return all the way. It will refuel there and then return to Johannesburg," a spokesman for the ousted president told Reuters in Johannesburg.

A Malagasy government minister confirmed that the plane, which earlier departed from South Africa, had turned around but said the reasons were unknown.

Geez. Imagine being on that plane! That's quite the detour. Maybe next time....

Ravalomanana to return to Madagascar Saturday


Madagascar's ex-president Marc Ravalomanana said Friday he will return home from exile in South Africa on Saturday, almost three years after he was ousted by the island's current leader Andry Rajoelina.

"It is with great pleasure and carrying the hopes and aspirations of all Malagasy for a return to peace and freedom in our beloved country that I announce, once again, that I will return to Madagascar tomorrow,"Ravalomanana told a press conference in Johannesburg.

Ravalomanana had previously tried to return home in February last year, but was blocked at the airport by airline officials who said they had received a Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) order from Madagascar that the country would turn away any aircraft that had him on board.

The self-made millionaire said Friday he was confident that the scenario would not repeat itself.

"It has taken a year of hard negotiation to get back to the point where I am confident that I can now return to my beloved count…

Wedding Bells

Today wasn't my best day. I am trying to be patient and realize that it's only been three days since I had a rather upsetting meeting and the same day that I found out like, for real that my contract was officially over in 2012. It's hard not to feel like a failure, regardless that I was only supposed to be here for two years.

I don't want to make it sound like I cry all day. Even though I'm bothered often by my career uncertainty, I still have a lot of laughs. But today...was a challenge.

And then, the sweetest, nicest staff member came into my office, so very nervously and so uncomfortable and awkward, and invited me to his wedding.
The invitation was beautiful, very cute, and I was honored that he invited me. I've only been to one Malagasy wedding. Unfortunately it's the same night as Louis' Christmas party, so I won't be able to stay for the entire reception, but I'm so looking forward to going to the wedding.

The groom was the first Malag…

Singing (and running) in the Rain

It's been like, a REALLY long time since I've said this or felt like this, but, I LOVE RUNNING.
When so many things in my life feel out of control or chaotic, I can go for a run. When I'm feeling blue, I can go for a run.

Tonight's run almost didn't happen because last week I took a pretty good sized chunk off of my big toe and it hasn't totally healed (I hope you weren't eating breakfast or anything...). But I thought it would be ok, and off I went. I had to stop once to get a plastic bag to keep my iTouch from getting soaking wet.

It started raining so hard that I couldn't see properly. I had less and less area to run because it was puddle after puddle - or more like a group of puddles forming a mini-lake.

And cause I haven't taken any pictures lately, I tried to capture just how soaking wet I was. (Anyone who has lived with me is going to love the first one).
 That shirt is a few shades lighter when it's not drenched.

The pictures might not …

Here we go again!

Job hunting.


Some stats: Number of work weeks left in my contract: 11 Number of meltdowns I’ve had thinking about it: 11 Number of drinks I’ll have tomorrow by the pool: 11 (Well, not eleven drinks. Maybe nine? Kidding. Sort of.)
Some good things: I have transferrable skills. There’s lots of jobs around the world. I have a savings account. I have a lot of contacts (who could know someone who knows someone that needs an expat). I've been wanting to transition into another area outside of Finance.

It’s a WEE bit harder since I’m kind of a “package deal” now… but since the other half of my package is pretty smart and I’m….pretty, I’m sure we’ll put our heads together and somehow figure something out.
And in the mean time? I have like a GAZILLION things to get done before May so my schedule is going to be jam-packed. AND I still have two vacations to get in!!!
I sound all smiles and rainbows…but yah, I’m a bit worried, but….I don’t think I have much of a choice to just …

Christmas in Madagascar

I'm pretty behind on any blog posts...I haven't even gone through my Christmas and New Year pictures..

Until then, I'll leave you with some pictures of what went on Christmas in Tamatave while I was away.

A co-worker, a very seasoned expat, very creative and full of ideas, had everyone over for a magical evening!!

 There's one in every crowd... sometimes Santa is scary! :-)

I spent last Christmas Eve I spent in Tamatave, sort of feeling sorry for myself because I was missing my family and didn't feel the "Christmas" spirit.

After seeing all of the 166 pictures taken that night and the following day....I don't think I was looking hard enough.

Swallowed Up

Hi! I'm still alive. I've just been swallowed up by the effects of jetlag. And this mountain of clothes...

And try to fit them into this little closet. 
Camp life is awesome.

(actually it's not that bad. But it's an adjustment..)

And here I thought Air Canada was the worst....

It's midnight. I flew from Montreal to Paris, walked around for a few minutes, then flew from Paris to Antananarivo (and boy are my arms tired. wah wah!). Tomorrow morning I'll leave the hotel at 06h00 and get back into Tamatave, back to camp.

I am officially declaring my hatred for Air France. The agent service on ground is awful, they are always A MINIMUM of two hours late (when there are no poor weather conditions), and continually have strikes.

Compared to most of my collegues, I've had the best and easiest experiences with Air France.

Our September rotation, AF was late and Louis missed his connection, forcing him to stay a day in Paris.
November rotation, there was a strike and we had to book with Swiss Air and spend an night in Johannesburg.
This rotation, AF flight was late and Louis missed his connection again. The connection times range between 2.5 and 4 hours. PLENTY of time.

A friend of mine's luggage has been lost THREE CONSECUTIVE TIMES. It was later fo…