Thinking back on S. Africa

September 24, 2007

I’m now asked on a nearly daily basis, “So, how was S. Africa?” I’ve found that I have a number of responses that I provide depending upon who the questioner is, how well I know them, and how much of an answer they want or are ready to endure.

For all my whining and whinging  and complaints that I’ve voice here, I really did enjoy the time I spent in S. Africa. The work I was involved and assisted with in all 3 laboratories I visited was very rewarding, and better yet, was successful. By that standard alone, my time in S. Africa was well spent and worth all my time and energy.

Yes I did have a number of issues while there: far less connection and bandwidth than I prefer, the accommodations were at times less than satisfactory, the whole International Driver’s permit acquisition problem all created stress and ate  up my time, energy and patience. Despite these multiple frustrations I would return in a heartbeat if the right offer was made. Many of the irritations I faced were solved by the time I left or could have been avoided entirely it I’d had foreknowledge of the situation.  If I’d had the information I was searching for the week I arrived, rather than finding answers 3 weeks into my trip many things would have gone more smoothly.

Knowing the situation you are walking into makes all the difference in the world. With the knowledge and experience I now have,  I would expect any future trips to S. Africa to go much more smoothly and pleasantly. I do hope they will  materialize with time and careful cultivation.


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