Friday, 6 November 2009

Light at the end of this tunnel

Well, I survived a difficult week, and the silver lining has been to get upgraded on my flight from Dhaka to Dubai on Emirates. I had a little chat with the check-in guy about cricket, and I am dressed smartly casual, and hey presto! Cricket also saved me from having to bribe the security guys on the way into the airport. At first I said I was a businessman when they x-rayed my bags, and this got them interested in the contents of my bags. As they persisted in trying to find out if I was a businessman (their English wasn't great), I decided to tell them I was here for the cricket between Zimbabwe and Bangladesh, and straight away they understood the word "cricket" and let me straight through. As it happens, some of the Zimbabwe squad are flying home from the tour today on my flight, and are sat across the room from me here in the lounge. I'm afraid I don't recognise them, and from their slightly portly shape, they may be part of the back-room staff!
The work was difficult, with some quite officious bureaucrats trying to catch me out about the equipment we've provided, but I was able to mostly rebuff them. We did have one problem caused by rats or mice nibbling the cables on an $18000 scanner whilst it's spent over a year in different warehouses! $20 to a local electrician got that fixed though...
The normal staff - not the top brass - were very polite and helpful, as was everyone in the hotel, and the climate was lovely, warm without being too hot. It's a very poor place, but I wasn't hassled on the street at all by beggars.
Skype has been great, although I've had to wait up until after 1am to speak with Olga and Lara, but it was worth it.
OK, time to stop laptopping, I seem to have been in front of this thing a lot this week. Time to get my things together and look forward to a glass of bubbly on the plane! It doesn't happen often, after all.

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