Sunday, 20 September 2009

Bye Bye Barcelona!!
And thanks to All of You for the nice farewell Party!! See you soooon!

Saturday, 19 September 2009

The end of Barna, beginningof the crazy trip!

Nice to know more from your on-sites experience Soph!!!

I finally Sold the last clothes:

Visit my favorite places once again:

Went to lovely villages in Catalunya:

And say goodbye to good friends!

(and farewell party picture soon online... haha)

It's Time to Leave Barcelona with good mood!!!

I'll spend10 days at home before flying forMalasia on 3rd of October!


Friday, 18 September 2009

Ya llega la hora de irse amores!!!! Woohoo!!
Que tengais una despedida de puta madre!!!!

Monday, 14 September 2009

Finally got to go on-site!!!!

Hello World! Hello Oyster!

Uff 2-3 weeks already not having written anything, have to catch up otherwise i may forget, actually i have no idea what i can talk about, but talking shit is a great skill i have ;)

Boca Chica was pretty good, it's the closest beach to Santo Domingo, clear-blue water, white sand, little tiny island you can swim to if you want some privacy. But basically it's the place to go on sunday to cool down and have drinks all dressed-up in the water with your friends and familly. Many people, loud merengue, lots of "tigres", souvenirs, massaje, all types of food etc. Apparently Juan Dolio is a lot more quiet, i'll have to check that next week-end maybe.

After that i went during the week to visit one of the project i'm working on in Barahona's region (South-West towards Haiti's border). Was suppose to be for a whole week, but of course it got posponed, then shortenned...i thouhg i would never get there...

It was so hard and frustrating to write about a project i haven't even seen, i really needed this visit to stick together the puzzle pieces of information i got from all the reports i read previously. It's actually a pretty fucked-up project, it has been running for 3 years now and due to natural distasters but also human incompetence, it got soooo delayed, the warehouse is still not built, so we can not install the processing plant to extract the oil from the seeds... Now i have to take over the "Brown" (El "Marrón") and slove everything to achieve the objectives of the project before February!!!! (Other wise the Spanish governemnt ask the NGOs to give the money they gave back, and with interest!!!! Outrageous...)

So went there, for 2 days, first day the representants of the local NGO, the cooperative, and myself for CODESPA (wooooo!!!) officialy gave silos to the each of the communities of agricultors.. Completely useless celebration, just for the show, for pictures, free food, and all-prepared speeches to the donors so that they hear and see what they came for.

It was so obvious, especially with one of the beneficiaries, who had all the merit to have learn his lesson really well, making us the list of all the trainning he received, and how great they were, and that he already started making soap out of the Jatropha's oil (even if we didn't actually start producing oil...) jajaja. Second day was just visiting the fields.

Continuing with the visits on-site last week, i went to visit another project, CODESPA is actually implementing (for all other project we are only givingf funds and technical assistance to the local NGOs). We went to 2 pf the poorest neighbouhood of Santo Domingo, Saban Perdida & Cañitas, where CODESPA is giving grants to pay 80% of the schooling fees for 200 children.

And this week, i went to the inner-country, in the mountains of Bonao, rode a mule to get to a coffeecultors community for a course on sustanaible agriculture.

It is great to see different segments of the dominican society, with different type of resources and needs. Urban vs Rural, it also changes a lot between the inner-country and the west, where there are a lot more inmigration from Haiti.

I finally get to see another reality, and confront what i've heard, learnt with what i witness!!!!

Today is Friday - the 18th, i'm thinking of Amy and Kwin probably having right now their farewell party, it's their turn to leave BCN, while i'm working hard, as you can see jejeje - and i can't wait to leave worl at 5 and go on a week-end to Playa Bonita!!!!! Just the name give you an idea of what i'll be doing, playa, bbq on the beach, grilled-fish, rhum....hmmm can't wait!!!!!

Have a nice week-end!!!!!!

Monday, 7 September 2009

Happy Birthday Soph!!



Sunday, 23 August 2009

Tourism & local stuff... Easy to choose from!!!!!

Just a quick Sunday morning post before going to Boca Chica today with my roomies and some other friends, and i'm having a bit of nostalgie :( BCN times... crazy times...

However things are great here, last week-end we wnet to Casa Campo a really huge, hype location, closed to the public, you can only
get there if you have been invited, pass teh security, leave your driving license... Lucky we were invited by Carla a girl from Porto Rico, i personally didn't know, but she welcomed us anyway to celebrate Jolly's birthday. So tehre we were Jolly and his great escort girls jajaj 6 lovely ladies.

This place was maybe a bit too much for me, too perfect, perfect people, houses, grass, fake medieval village, golf cars to get around, beach cleanned and set for tourist. Was fun being in another world for the week-end.

Coming out of croudy Santo Domingo, to Casa Campo, were you are not a minority anymore, things are all european-like, a real resort for rich people. Experience i'm sure i won't be able to do again, good to do once, but only once.

Amazing how DR is full of constrasts, i read in a guide that it's the country were 42% of its population lives with less than 2$ a day but has the greater rate of Mercedes Benz in the world...
Actually in Santo Domingo there is a big gap as well, not even in the housing, but also in the leisure offers. For example monday night we went an Happy Hour in Segafredos (150RD$ for 2 Margaritas!!). And this place is very weirs, as soon as you get in, it looks like one of these "Cool" bars in the Born in BCN, design, black white and red, with a huge back room filled with beds, tables, Dj, air-conditionning...And not only "rubios" (dominican name for white foreigners, or guiris in BCN) go there, it's full of dominicans that want to "show". My colleague Felipe told me when we sent to La Vega to visit a partner local NGO, that dominicans work a lot on their appearance, at all levels.

(Wealth Dispersion measure by the GINI Index: Lower dispersion is in Iceland with 25 and the highest in Sierra Leone with 63DR 51, FR 31, Spain 34, NZ 36, Oz 35)
That was for the Development issue of the day jajaj ;)

I'll be able to tell you more about Development next week, as i'm going the whole week to Barahona, to visit 2 projects for BioFuel: one which is ours with 150 families working for a banana cooperative, trying to diversify their activities and grow Jatropha, a plant from wich you can extract oil used for making BioFuel. Tecnically this is great not to be dependent on the price of the banana only and try to boost the use of biofuel in these poor communities do be less dependent as well on the incresing and outrageous price of fuel here.
The other project is even more toward the border with Haiti, but financed by the EU. So.. It's a lot bigger, towards selling on international markets..
I am sooo excited to go there and finally see a project, it's beneficiaries, how it's actually being implemented etc ect !!!! Yepee!!!
Ok have to go, we're going to la playa Boca Chica, a very tipical beach were the people from Santo Domingo go for a Sunday (as there is no beach in Santo Domingo muf muf)
Finally some dominican destination!!!!! Do local, Be local!!!
I'll tell you my impressions when i'll get back next week-end (or maybe tonight if internet works)!!!!!
Que vaya Bonito!!!!!!
La Soph

Monday, 10 August 2009

Still Here and impatient!

Hola Guapetonas!!

Hey, it's so excitiiiing to see your adventures soph and to remember the "good" moments that amandine pass over in Mexico!! hehe....
Ready for new adventures! I need it Now!!
In one month and few days I'll leave beautiful and crazy Barceloca! uuuf...

So happy that Amy is back in my world for at least two weeks in which we will welcome a old friend here (Julie!!) and enjoy the "Fiesta Major" in Gracia district and the last summer parties! We'll enjoy right to the end every single days in BCN!

For the moment my future travel is summed up in two beautiful big books: Lonely planet for South East Asia and New Zealand, in a one way ticket (special disco dedication for Soph!) to Kuala Lumpur !!! Read read, think not too much and gooo!! With amy as travel coordinator, I feel relax about the good fun we'll have there!

Let us know about you last week end Soph and have fun!