Blue skies…

Up early to watch the Yankees clinch the AL.  The sky is blue, except for getting the pictures hung I’m mostly moved into my house, and there’s a new Ambassador arriving in Cotonou today (actually last night).

One of the projects was getting my desktop computer up and running.  Plug it in and turn it on, right?  Wrong.  Okay, that will make it run, but to access the Internet I need to configure it.  My virus protection is months out of date.  My versions of browser, Java, flash, etc.  are months out of date.  I needed to download and install Skype and Open Office.  Finally, I cleared out unused programs and files and defragmented the whole thing and I was finally ready to use the computer.  I’m sure I’ve forgotten something :-).

My past homes have all had frame and wallboard walls, even the one in Florida where the outer wall was concrete block.  Hanging pictures is easy.  Push pins are strong enough for a lot of them.  A small brad will take care of the rest.  A heavy mirror means you should find a stud to hammer the nail into.

Not in Benin.  The walls, inside and out, are masonry.  So all the photos, paintings and souvenirs I brought to make the house a home are still sitting in stacks on the chairs and the floor.  I’ve been told the GSO will send someone over the hang them, but I don’t know exactly where I want something until I put it up, so that won’t work.  I’m looking at some of those “stick up and remove” hooks I’ve seen advertised on TV.  I’ve ordered some through  I’ll see how (if) those work.  But, that’ll be a few weeks, so my housewarming will wait until after Halloween.  Maybe before Thanksgiving.

Speaking of food, I realized this weekend how much my cooking has come to depend on the toys I have — a crock pot, waffle iron, George Foreman grill, and half a dozen others.  Not all are electric.  I have a little chopper.  It’s a jar whose cap has a spring loaded handle with blades on the bottom. Put something in the jar, screw on the lid, bang the handle up and down until the blades chop whatever (onions, celery) into whatever size bit you want.  This weekend, I chopped pickles (available here)  into relish (not available here) for a hamburger (cooked on the George Foreman).

I meet the new Ambassador today.  More on that in my next post.


1 Comment

Filed under Foreign Service Stuff

One response to “Blue skies…

  1. Cat

    I am enjoying your posts about life in Benin and the trials and tribulations of a foreign post.

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