Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Lost Shoes and Monsoon Blues
June 13th, 2007

Well, I just realized that I have been a bit delinquent in my blogging lately, so I will try to make up for lost time. First off, I bought a motor scooter! I love driving on them, and I have been wanting to get out of Dhaka City, so now I have the means. It is also useful for me to use to get around my neighborhood, since the police have now closed most of the main roads in my neighborhood to rickshaws. Previously I could take a rickshaw and run all of my errands for the day, but now I have to get off of one rickshaw, cross the street, and then take a different rickshaw to get around. Both annoying and very inconvenient, especially if you are carrying groceries! I am also very sad since I really love rickshaws! I think the decision to take them off the road is foolish, especially now that monsoon season is here. Rickshaws are really the only vehicles that can get through the flooded streets... Plus, they are very environmentally friendly and provide jobs for many poor people.

So yes, monsoon season is here! Technically it doesn't start until Thursday, but the rains have really started coming this week. Normally it rains quite heavily in the early morning and at night. In the afternoon it will drizzle, sometimes turning into a full downpour in the late afternoon. Even though everything is soggy now, and my hair will be frizzy for the next two months, the rain does cool down the air, which is a welcome relief from the 100 degree weather we have been having. The trickiest thing about the monsoons is the flooding. The streets can become impassible with knee-high weather in short periods of time. This aggravates the already horrible traffic conditions here and makes it virtually impossible to get from one part of town to another.

On another note, I have recently noticed many abandoned shoes lying around in the street. Every time I see one I wonder how is it that somebody could just lose one of their shoes and not stop to pick it up?! Well, I now have the answer. I was driving back from my Bangla class on my scooter the other day in the pouring rain. It had rained so much that the street was quite flooded - I could barely get through on my scooter. At a stop, I put my foot down to stabilize the scooter, but when I lifted my foot back up out of the ankle deep water, the current took my shoe away with it! I was on the road in traffic, so there was no way for me to get off my bike to look for my missing shoe. I guess that my flip flop is now joining the ranks of the other hundreds of abandoned shoes lost in Dhaka. I hope that don't lose anymore though, because they don't sell my shoe size here! (Bangladeshi women have tiny feet and I wear a size 10!)

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