Musings on my adventures around the world and my ties back in Texas as well as some of the the ideas I have to adapt and create to keep those places close to home.

Friday, January 19, 2007


"Last year, Guinea was ranked by Transparency International as the most corrupt country in Africa."
A quote from a BBC article about the current worker strikes racking the country. This is sad news that depresses me. I can't help but wonder what is going to happen to the country. I have a feeling that it has gone down hill so much since I left that it will take some drastic measures and major time to fix things up.

I think that any place you live for a couple of years finds a way to imprint itself on your soul. Guinea, especially in the form of Koundara (my village) and the people there, have done that to me. It makes it all the more sad to read news articles that highlight the backwards steps the country seems to be taking. What is going to happen? And how long will it take before I can say that Guinea is doing better then it was when I was there. No country should have to fight so hard not to lose ground.

Friday, January 12, 2007

50 places to see before you die

Last night on the service bus my group of compatriots started talking about travel destinations (our favorite topic). The conversation slowly got around to the BBC's list of 50 places to see before you die. Out of curiousity I went on-line to see how many of the 50 I had hit. 12 if you count the trip I'll be taking in two weeks to Egypt and Jordan: Grand Canyon, Great Barrier Reef, Florida, South Island of New Zealand, Sydney, New York, Petra, Pyramids, Luxor, North Island of New Zealand, Iceland, Abu Simbel - Egypt. Not to bad...The fun thing is that I also found a sight which will calculate how long it will take you to hit all 50 places at the rate you're going right now... According to it I'll be 113 before I finish off the list. Just out of curiousity I also put in how many years it's been since I saw the first on my list (Iceland in 1999) and it came up with a much more reasonable 26 additional years. Now I don't really thing that I'll have seen all of these places in another 26 years, but its a nice dream.

Thursday, January 11, 2007


Well it's exam time, which means that I have a pile of grading to do. It also means that I'm procrastinating on that in any way I can. There's only so long you can look at students murdering math before you go crazy and want to do someone some harm or else take a nap. I'm 3/8 of the way through my grading. Unfortunately that doesn't seem like too happy of a number to me right now. Daily I'm regretting the format of the math department here. Thanks to the Turkish ministry of education, math and geometry are considered two separate courses requiring their own notes, exams and schedules. What that means is that for my 6 hours I have each group in class I have to come up with grades for two separate courses. All in all not so bad until I realized that it means I have double the number of exams to grade - 2 for each of my students. Sigh....back to the grindstone.