Saturday, November 01, 2014

Cinco Aleatorio

1)  Postmate, Kind of -- I don't have a postmate, but I do have a fellow PCV named Kelsey who's not too far from my post, but more in the countryside.  I recently attended one of her recycling charlas, complete with old fashioned, roll-out paper presentations and an icebreaker:

It was quite motivating to see such enthusiastic community members, making suggestions, coming up with solutions, etc.

2)  Como se dice "sorcelery" -- Baseball is big down here in Panama and one of the students in the office asked me who I thought would win Game 7 of the World Series.  I wanted to say that whoever had their mojo going would win.  I didn't know how to say 'mojo' in Spanish, so I ended up not making a prediction.  Either way, looks like the Giants had their mojo going.  Note:  I had an idea what 'mojo' meant, but not its precise definition.  According to the Oxford dictionary, it means magic charm or spell.  Sounds like sorcery to me. 

3)  Ser o No Ser -- one thing I do to improve my Spanish is by reading books.  That's what was great about Guadalajara, Mexico -- the bookstores were everywhere.  At the regional capital here in Panama, not so much.  The only books I could find are school books.  So, as much as I love the classics, its also nice to read newer books like those by Malcolm Gladwell or J.K. Rowling in Spanish.  Since I didn't have much of a selection here, I ended up buying Hamlet.  They also had Plato, but that might take a while to finish since that's probably already hard to understand in English, let alone Spanish. 

4)  Sustainable Aid -- Back in Cameroon, I was influenced by a fellow PCV named Jeff.  He was of the belief that we should not do any funded projects.  Not one.  Zero.  We should only be teaching techniques (eg agricultural techniques) and sharing ideas.  He saw projects that required outside funding as handouts.  He even wrote about it in our newsletter.  He draws influence from William Easterly and Roland Bunch.  I agree with him to some extent.  As they say, "Give a man fish…"

5)  Quote of the day -- "This is a sub-Saharan Spring and it must continue against all the presidents who are trying to hang on to power in Africa."

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