Sorry for the delay on this post. I had a major migraine last night (and also did not have great internet access) and was not able to post this. But here you go. Last Sunday when I got back from my two week vacation from visiting my family, I wasn't really exciting about coming back to Dhaka. I had a really great time with them, and a part of me just wanted to stay. I took Sunday off from work and just stayed in, I was still really tired from the lack of sleep from the bus ride from the day before. The next day though I built the energy to walk the 30 minutes to the IUB center. The walk is really nice, most of its along Gulshan Lake, going into Baridhara. But the heat here is ridiculous and by the time I get there, I am soaking wet. I am not really one to sweat, and I wonder how most of the people here get by. Once I get to work, I don't even really know what to do as I still do not really have an agenda. After a couple of hours, I knock on Dr. Haque's door and I see that she is working on the spousal transmission report still. I helped her with the wording for awhile but I felt bad because I had to leave early to meet up with Reaz. I was happy to see him for the first time since I had gotten back. We planned on going to Bashundhara Mall, which is where Daddy and I went when we first got into town. It took forever to get there, and it was kind of uneventful...but still fun. Afterwards, we went to eat at a restaurant that David has been raving about since we have been here, but it wasn't that great at all. After dinner, we got dessert at the American Club and tried to play games...but I think it was pretty uneventful.
Tuesday was a bummer day on a personal level (nothing related to anything here), but I noticed how beautiful the view of Gulshan is from Baridhara on my walk to and from work. I found out that Dr. Rahman has dengue fever, something that apparently is extremely epidemic here; I guess that's why he hasn't been emailing me back. I never know what to do at work. I just sit in front of the computer and I guess look up things that would relate to what I want to do. But I want to start doing research. I feel like I'm back to square 1. I'm not really hungry and I never ended up eating dinner. I tried to go to sleep early but I got interrupted several times. On Wednesday, Dr. Rahman finally emailed me back saying he wanted to meet before he left for his conference in California on the 20th. After "work", I decided to explore my surroundings and walked around Gulshan. I went to the market to look around. I don't understand numbers very well in Bengali (they are very difficult) so I couldn't buy anything which made me sad. I also walked in to a restaurant nearby the apartment that I have been eyeing for some time. I just sat down and had a meal. They didn't take credit card though and the lights went off and some point. Typical in this country. I was pretty tired by the time I came home. I had to start moving my things to my new room because Sara was coming in the next morning...very early. I also let David know that I am thinking about moving out of the apartment in general because the lack of my room not having an AC is a major factor of the huge rash across my stomach. I just don't feel comfortable in that apartment.
I woke up a little bit before 6 to prepare for Sara's arrival. I finished all of my transfers just as soon as she rang the doorbell. First we watched the presidential debates...I don't really know how I felt about it except that McCain has a stick up his ass. Sorry. I really didn't mind him that much until about a couple of weeks ago, and I really wish that I were in the States for all of this. History is changing and I'm not there to witness it!! I went to work afterward and came back to an empty house. Guess David took Sara around the city. I called Reaz and Hans to see if they wanted to grab some dinner, and also I wanted to go to the American Club to cast my absentee ballot. I know it doesn't count, but it's the principle of the matter. (I don't care who you vote for, but GO VOTE!!) Reaz was coming to pick me up, but then I realized that i was locked in the apartment because I still don't have a key. Yes, after two months. Another reason I kind of want to leave. Finally got that resolved, voted, ate dinner. Mediocre night. Definitely decided I was moving out though. Came home early though because I needed to get something done, and the rest of the group didn't come home until after 1, so I crashed on the tiny couch in the living area because I still didn't have a bed in my new room. My sleep was interrupted many times that night. No fun. I realize that this marked my two months since I moved to Dhaka. Wow, 7 more to go. I hope I can make it.
The next day I went to visit my second cousin in Dhanmondi. I ate lunch, took a nap, and ate dinner at her place. Played with her daughter who still can't talk. I've decided I like kids who can talk rather than ones who can't. The daughter did take a nap with me though, which was cute. My relatives are so curious about my life in America. Girls in this country do not get very much freedom it doesn't seem like. They just go from the parents' house to their husband's house with no sort of independent stage in between. I think their perception of American girls are ones who have promiscuous sex, drink incessantly, etc. I told them they were wrong, but now that I think about it...it's not really that far off. At least college girls. Not all of them, but a good chunk...compared to the ones here. Regardless, it was funny to have that conversation. I didn't really want to go home because it was getting late so I was able to spend the night at the other second cousin's house. She has a daughter who can talk...which proved to be much more fun. The next day I was fed well, but I was itching to go home, but I couldn't really leave by myself. I waited for my uncle to come pick me up, but he was running very late. They made me take a shower there, which I wasn't happy about since I clearly didn't have another change of clothes. I feel like these relatives don't think I can do anything on my own, which kind of makes me angry. I don't know how to tell them that I'm actually very independent.
I finally left and went to Reaz's aunt and uncle's apartment, where they had invited all of us over for tea and dinner. Their apartment was absolutely amazing/gorgeous. Reaz's uncle is an art collector, and his pieces are all over the apartment. I don't think there is a place like this in all of Bangladesh. And they were so welcoming. It ended up being David, Sara, Hans, and a girl named Katherine that I guess that everyone had met while I was on my trip. She was really nice though. The food was excellent, as was the conversation. We probably stayed longer than we should have, and Reaz walked me home afterwards. We don't live too far apart which is nice! Sara and I had a really nice talk once we got home, and I'm so glad that she's finally here.
I feel like I've been saying this forever, but I just want to be able to start work. I want to devote my time and energy into something productive. I also need to find another place to live. I'm getting kind of tired of this. :( I want to be able to unpack my suitcases and call somewhere home. I still haven't been able to do that.