27 June 2011

Jah Bless

I'm basically finished with the NSTP's newfangled client database, and ready to roll it out.  It's a 1.5MB MSExcel sheet of all 3000+ clients in the NGO's history, since its founding in 1986.  I am currently going through the list of names and spying out double entries and combining them into one to make the list more efficient and precise.  Then, when I'm convinced all the data entry is complete and comprehensive, I'll arrange the names, dates, and numbers in such ways as to divine a few telling statistics, (e.g. average number of courses taken per client, average number of days waited before client-course match is made, distribution of clientele by constituency) all useful in confirming for grant writing purposes.  And any moneys that can be made through any means, not least of all grants, is most helpful at this stage.

I had an absolutely wonderful weekend, sharing in a number of activities with my girlfriend of nearly 2 months.  We visited the "Eat Local Foods" Day festival in Independence Square on Friday, and had a lovely meal of ital, rabbit, monkey, and carrot cake, and we took home some five-fingers wine prepared by the students of an agro-processing course offered by none other than the NSTP itself. 

Then, come Saturday passed, we enjoyed a lovely evening at a friend's house in Trinity, cooking for her a meal of Coconut Fried Shrimp on a bed of Basmati brown rice and a garden salad.  The blessed evening was overshadowed, unfortunately, by a harrowing event, when a local dog that we had briefly come to know ran into traffic and got hit by a passing bus.  It all happened right in front of us, while we were waiting for a lift.  My girlfriend, being a veterinary student and a friend to all animals, was understandably traumatized, but she stayed strong and we remembered the recently deceased animal in our conversation later that night.

Fortunately, Sunday was a few more steps in the right direction, as we joined a group of fellow PCVs for a day off at the Ocean Terrace Inn, complete with snacks, pools, lounges, cable television, and most importantly, air conditioning.  You'd have thought we were spending the day at Disneyland.  It was great to get together with everyone again, and afterwards the two of us went to Port Zante for ice cream and a bus lift home.

I know I haven't been on Skype during the weekends very consistently, and I'm sorry.  Most likely, that will be my tendency for a while: available on Skype most weekday evenings after 5:00; and if I'm on during the weekend at all, it will be sometime during the day.

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