Friday, February 19, 2010

Stormy Weather...again...

Riding out the third bad storm of the season. Woke to no power. Hamdullah it’s back on and I even have Internet going in the house, although with the way it’s blowing, might lose both anytime now. So far, it’s still not as bad as last year, and this year I’m geared up for it (thanks to Land’s End sleeping-bag-of-a-coat, “Hot Hands” and a space heater that takes the freeze out of the air.

It’s been a pretty quiet week. In town all week, doing normal stuff like going to the Coop every day, tutoring, few meetings w/others for on-going projects. Got a ton of stuff done on the computer. Nice to have one of these weeks every once in a while.

Had a chance to finally dig into the website/blog that I committed to launch in conjunction with the International Women’s Day festivities that Jess (thru her Culture Vultures business) is coordinating in Fes for March 6-8. The intent of the website/blog is to have a place for women in Morocco to get different types of relevant information, a place to share stories and connect. Have just a couple glitches to clean it up, otherwise it’s “live”. Check it out at

I’ve also finished the Adwal Cooperative website/blog, so it’s up and running, for information purposes only (not yet possible to buy/sell over the internet in Morocco). Check it out at
Gotta say I’m getting pretty good at putting these together, and getting the rest of the Adwal materials, ie; business cards, brochures, price list, invoices, etc. into English, Arabic and French. Thank goodness for Google translator (not being a French-speaking sort) and Google images. Why did it take me so long to discover those 2 fine sites??

We’ve finally got a date for the cheesemaking workshop, and now it looks like there are interested women here in REK who want to attend. Lisa and I need to Skype to sort out all the materials and facilities needed so they can select the best location to do the 2 days of hands-on training. I’m also looking forward to using the Cost Benefit Analysis tool that Cynthia has shared. Hopefully I’ll be able to communicate it effectively to the Milk Coop members so they can make their own decision on the economics of going into cheesemaking after the workshop. I really think it’s a great tool to help folks make more objective decisions. I just anticipate that the concept of using different sets of assumptions may be a challenge. Stay tuned.

I’m also in the midst of getting my vacation plans in place. See, we have to use up all our vacation days before Aug 12th, or 3 months before our COS (Close of Service). I’m excited that Lindsay (cousin Arne’s daughter) is coming the first of April for a visit and Pam (and hopefully Jenna) who I worked w/at the Heifer SW Regional office are coming about the same time that Lindsay leaves. Then Kristen, another PCV, and I have a week in Paris scheduled (r-t fares to Europe are shockingly cheap-about $50) in June, and Jess and I are hoping to go to Spain in early August. (She lived in Barcelona for 7 years so will be great to see it thru her eyes). I was hoping to travel most of August, to miss the heat and Ramadan, but alas, the vacation needs to be taken earlier than that.

Now if only the internet and power hold on, I’ll try and get some of the Olympic coverage downloaded. Miss not being able to watch the Olympics-really love them-even sports I don’t usually have much interest in-we’ll see what I can find.

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