Sunday, August 12, 2007

No pitchurs today

It seemed that every time I stepped out of the house, the rain would zero in on me. I tried to go for a run in the morning - that lasted about five minutes before I ran back home. It continued thunderstorming for a few hours. Later in the afternoon, I brought my umbrella (which usually guarantees that it will not rain) and checked in all visible directions for rain before leaving the house. The sheet of rain sailed in from the direction hidden behind my neighbor's trees.

I continued walking in the rain, pretty much getting soaked. After walking 3 kms. I went back to the house as the sun was peeping out. At the end of the runway, I saw some familiar forms so stopped to talk with a German couple who are running a farm in Salavan. Meanwhile, they let their kids loose on the tarmac - they ran into every puddle and churned up mud with their bikes so that in the ten minutes I talked with the parents, the kids managed to cover themselves with mud. I felt clean in comparison.

Because it was raining so much, I didn't take any pictures. And I think I've taken even monsoon pictures for the year anyway. Or at least that's what I'm thinking today.

Anyway, it's been kind of a diddly weekend. We went into Pakse yesterday and interviewed some job applicants at a restaurant. Had lunch while waiting for the last person to show up (he left Attapeu at 6 am and finally arrived at 3 pm). I finished Harry Potter and the Whatever; pretty enjoyable. I appreciated some of the craft of writing - writing of action scenes, some nifty plot twists and filling in background for non-Potter fans (like myself) with a sentence or two rather than engaging in infodumps.

I also read A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled HOsseini. I liked this book better than The Kite Runner. Well, I liked the first 2/3 of the The Kite Runner for the same reason I liked A Thousand Splendid Suns - both books make Afghani history and culture come alive against the background of the political events. What I didn't like about The Kite Runner was the the bizarre events surrounding the return to Afghanistan at the end of the book - it was too unreal. But A Thousand Splendid Suns sticks with the real situations and how the constant war affected people, bringing out the worst as well as the best. The friendship between Laila and Mariam is well written and heartbreaking. The only weak points of the book is that sometimes the insertion of what was happening was a little rough and kinda didactic.

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