Thursday, December 30, 2010

Back in the Netherlands.

After a busride from the border of Eastern Congo to Kigali (Rwanda) to Kampala (Uganda) to Nairobi (Kenya), and a flight from Nairobi to Istanbul to Amsterdam, I am back in the Netherlands.

Mom, dad and both brothers picking me up at Schiphol. Mom...

and dad.

First impressions back in the Netherlands:
  • It is not necessary to copy&paste an email before sending it (being afraid that the internet breaks down while sending). Fantastic!
  • While on the road: "Where are all the 4x4s?" , "There are no holes in the road?", "Where is the CODAN?", and "What!? People stay on their side of the road?".
  • KLM does not mean "Kilo, Lima, Mike" and stop thinking like that.
  • A working shower! Even better: with warm water! And I can keep my mouth open. Ha!
  • When leaving the house I feel empty without a backup phone, GPS device, satellite phone, pocket knife, etc.
  • Here when things are written on walls it is graffiti, not information about vaccinations that took place.
  • More serious. There is so much abundance. I know that it is now the year's worst moment (Christmas and New Year), but still. Breakfast, then coffee with a slice of apple pie, then it's time for lunch, after that it tea with chocolate, etc.
  • So many serious things are going on in the world. What are the Dutch people busy with? The yearly top-2000 best songs, what to wear during New Year, etc. The scariest thing, though, is that in a matter of days I'll be used to all of the above again.

Back home. My town (Oudewater) covered in snow. Gorgeous!

Upcoming months

January 24th: flight back to New York. Then about two months after that I hope to be back in Africa.
So now until the 24th it is holiday?
Not really. The evaluation continues. Raul and me have daily contact with the teams in the field,
Raul (in Spain), Macartan (in Ireland) and me
did two all-nighters in row; so the work continues.
I do hope to finally get some time for my dissertation. Scary! The second semester of my fourth year is about to start. Maybe I should start writing something.

1 comment:

  1. So funny !
    Your first impressions back to the Netherlands were quite similar to mine back to Paris :) My friends called me "Un indien dans la ville" -> check out this movie, you'll like it.

    But we get used to all very quickly indeed.. Now back to Bukavu all - the mud, the sluggish slowness of the bureaucracy, the despairing internet - all seems normal again.

    But this time: no House 8, no brunches at Orchid and saddest of all, no Peter !