GSO and Facilities actually solve problems. Seriously. I wish I’d been able to get landlords to respond as quickly in Freetown as GSO seems to be able to here. And Motorpool! Always on time! OK, mostly on time. Great great great customer service. It may be helped by the fact that my husband keeps offering them beer when they come to fix things. If anyone from GSO or FAC is reading this: FREE BEER FOR FIXING OUR HOUSE. If you don’t partake in beer, we also offer cake and cookies. No, I didn’t bake them myself. Don’t be silly.
People are really friendly (to me). I’m not going to get into the awful racism that my husband has already experienced (that’s a long and angry post for another day), but I’ve generally find people to be very friendly. Very forthright and direct, which after a decade in West Africa, is both strange and familiar at the same time.
Taxi drivers are awesome. I know, taxi drivers everywhere are great to talk to. Here, especially so. Everyone, and I do mean everyone has a story here. This is a city that has seen a great deal of conflict and sorrow. It touches everyone, no matter your origin, religion, or nationality. Life is very hard here, if you’re poor, again, no matter who you are or where you come from. All the Hebrew I know, I learned from taxi drivers. And the Arab taxi drivers have been very helpful in getting me up to speed in Palestinian (as opposed to Modern Standard Arabic, which is what I learned at FSI).
Work is good. Really good. I don’t write about work a lot here, but I’ll briefly say that the working environment in the consular section is adult and professional, and that I actually like my hours at the window interviewing visa applicants. As predicted, I’m really enjoying consular work so far.
People are great about kids. Kids are EVERYWHERE. EVERYWHERE. I love it so much. It helps that my kids are so outgoing, of course,
And one thing that is not awesome: the hill that I live on has a 7% grade and I have been avoiding going out and running because I’m just not excited about facing the hills of Jerusalem. I am a big baby. I know. TOMORROW, I promise.