04 June 2012

Under Pressure

Ughh... I woke up this morning with sinus pressure strong enough to knock me out.  Unfortunately for me, I didn't recognize it for what it was until after I left home, or else a quick dose of sinus medication would have most likely restored me to my normal self.  But, instead, it's off to work feeling like my head is about to implode and my body drained of energy.  But I think I can still be productive, somehow.  Lately I've been spending the days at the NSTP office entering A Ganar trainees' attendance into the corresponding spreadsheet and calculating their training hours.  Not very engaging or inspiring work, but it takes a little bit of pressure off of a few others around here, freeing them up to deal with the countless other demands of maintaining a government agency while also implementing an island-wide youth program in the high schools.  So I'm happy to help out.

I was the recipient of a grand surprise this weekend: it seems that for the last x months the water bill for my building has not been paid. 
I was caught unawares,
They approached my home in pairs;
My bill was in arrears,
Confirming all my fears.
It took no less than three representatives from the Water Department (and a fourth to drive the get-away car, apparently) to inform me of the outstanding balance in excess of XCD 2,000.  Since I've never had the pleasure of meeting my landlord, he's certainly never personally signed a contract/lease agreement with me, and so in the... (calculating)... ninteteen months I've lived here, there has always been the possibility of this happening.  My neighbors, my APCD and I have always operated under the assumption that electricity and water were included in the rent.  Thankfully, this was confirmed when we finally managed to get hold of my landlord, who lives Stateside and tragically does not ascribe to the standard practice of employing an agent to manage his property down here on the island while he is away.  Instead, my lawn is turning into the untamed bushlands, and my water pressure is at risk of being cut off.  While no definitive resolution has yet been reached, we were successful in contacting the landlord and informing of the urgent nature of the situation.  Incidentally, my future rent payments remain canceled until such a time as the matter is concluded.  I'm not at all keen on the idea of picking up and moving to a new location all of a sudden, but I'm prepared for the possibility of such a necessity.

I enjoyed a long weekend this time last week, in honor of Whit Monday, taking advantage of the chance to release some of the pressure of all the projects I have going on right now.  Since a former PCV's parents were on-island, we took a big group down to the Southern Peninsula for an early summer Sunday at the beach.  It was a delightful romp for all of us, and pleasantly reminiscent of Memorial Day weekend Stateside.  (It always helps to have a bit of a reminder of home from time to time.)  Then a few of us capped it off by enjoying hot dogs and watching Monty Python and the Holy Grail.  It almost made me a little homesick! (almost)

My fifth trimesterly report is off, leaving just one more come September.  I was on the beach at Nevis on Saturday to finish it.  Those of us PCVs still here on St. Kitts are looking ahead to July, when our Close of Service week-long conference will be held.  This we know – what remains to be seen is whether our wishes for it to be held at any island not St. Kitts will come true.  If historical precedent is any indication, the St. Lucia staff will attempt to make arrangements with a hotel in St. Vincent, far far to the south of here, before pulling out and booking last-minute reservations at the Ocean Terrace Inn in Basseterre.  For my part, at least 79% of the appeal of COS is the chance to see all of our PCV friends from the other islands one last time.  But I'd sure like to augment that with the 21% appeal of getting to see a third Caribbean country during my term of service here.

The reader may recall that I was scheduled for two interviews the last couple of weeks.  The interviews went well, and indeed I am preparing for a second-round interview tomorrow.  I am highly reluctant to say more about it at this time, for fear of overexciting myself and adding more pressure to my performance.  God has already protected me thus far; I can't say enough how much it has eased my mind during interviews knowing that each one is not the end all be all of interviews, even for just that month or week.  Going through the process with two organizations simultaneously has allowed me to remain comfortable and just be myself during the interviews, and the effects are much more positive results, I hope.

Well, that's all the updates I have for now.  It's back to entering endless arrays of students' Present or Absent marks and adding up their training hours.  Then I need to make time for more work on this Ripple Institute website – it's shaping up nicely enough, but I still haven't made contact with the ICT Department yet.  All this to say nothing of organizing a training day for teachers volunteering at a possible Chess Camp this summer, and... oh! I need to contact the people in St. Lucia associated with the Chess Club there, and request info that can be used to persuade government officials here in St. Kitts.  And I need to do all of this soon, or else I fear that the trust these people have put in me and my ability to efficiently and effectively do this work will slip.

...No pressure.

1 comment:

  1. You can do it Chris! It's just that sinus pressure talking. I wrote a list down for myself to do today. And it seems daunting, but defeating Ganon will completely make my day, and the rest of the work won't seem too bad. Don't forget to have a little fun during all the hard work!