Friday, December 31, 2004

Thoughts at the end of the year

2004 is departing with a bang. The aftermath of the tsunami is still disrupting the lives of millions. Right now, it is front page news and I imagine it will stay there while the body count is still rising. Then in a few days, there will be fewer stories and international attention will move on to the next crisis. But for the victims, "moving on" won't be soon. Recovery will be slow, and there will be just as many people dying from disease and causes indirectly related to the tsunami. In my own work in Lao, recovery from the "Vietnam" war is still progressing slowly - infrastructure - both in buildings and in human resources - destroyed during the war is still being. And the war ended 30 years ago. How long will recovery take in this case?

Wednesday, December 29, 2004

Keeping track of myself

I deciding to start this blog so I can keep my story ideas in one place that I can find again when I travel. I'm always losing something; today I can't find my cell phone. That's no problem, silence is wonderful - but losing track of ideas, that's bad. A little about myself - I live in Laos, mostly work in the provinces. I come to Vientiane for red wine, pasta, then go off again to the remote areas and deep fried silkworms and entrails soup.

I'm working on science fiction stories that are based on some of the weird things that pop up in daily life. I have been living here for 8 years and have seen the arrival of running water in my house, 24-hour electricity and the change from an active oral tradition to a passive TV-oriented one. This is called development?