Life has suddenly gotten very busy, which, in itself, isn't a bad thing. I often leave home really early and return late. It isn't that I work a full day out there, but it takes up to 2 hours to get into town and having students 3 or even 4 hours apart means I can't go home between them and end up wasting time in town.
We had an interesting start to our day yesterday. Jurgis' motherboard on his pc blew. Yay... not news that brought great joy. We had another old one, thankfully, a temperamental one, but it works. Then I was woken by a crash... another shelf had come off the wall. With all the rain we've had, I think the very brickwork is soggy. There's a lot of black mould on that wall, so that is probably the case. The shelf had a lot of stuff stored on it. A few broken light bulbs later (we still need to test Jurgis' circular saw, which fell rather hard, but need the rain to clear to do that), we now have random boxes stacked all over the floor... again.
I have been contacted by a woman from SESC here. SESC is an organisation that promotes sport, exercise, culture, art, etc in Brazil. They're looking for a South African who can do workshops on weekends for the duration of the world cup to spread awareness of what South Africa is all about. Apparently, it will be paid work. I did, however, laugh when she asked if I knew of any singers, writers, dancers, poets, artists, etc in the local South African community. What community? I tried to start one, but the consulate at the time said "No", they were not prepared to associate themselves with any form of community. Besides, any South African who is anyone will be heading home for the world cup. Anyway, I'm meeting her this weekend to put together a plan of action. I'm rather excited, not because it's work, but to be able to spread awareness here. Yes, we do have telephones in South Africa. Yes, I am white (shock! horror!) No, there are no lions in the street. Besides, it's the mambas you have to worry about. Y'know... that kind of thing ; )
Then, last week or so, I got a call one night. A guy from my hometown, Port Elizabeth, in South Africa tracked me down by researching my domain name on Whois. He wanted to know if I could buy a domain for him with a .com.br (Jurgis and I agreed he must be somewhat crazy, but if he wants it....). You have to have a Brazilian tax number to get a Brazilian domain name. Oh, and they wanted our parents' names too. That's the Brazilian way... nothing happens without your parents' names on any document. Then the mess started. How to get money into Brazil. Paypal worked fine, except that after the money was in my bank for 2 days, my bank, in all it's wisdom, sent it back to Paypal. Paypal blames the bank. The bank blames Paypal. Yes, we go in circles like that here. Then we thought of Western Union. He had a bit of a song and dance that end and finally transferred the money today. I must say, it was fairly painless in the end. It did require trips into town and the bank.
Uh... I've run out of steam. I know there was more to post about, but my bed is calling. Oh! Tat went to Alton Towers, an amusement park in the UK, courtesy of Kings Park (they took all the volunteers). Fun was had by all, I think.