FINES vs CORRUPTION vs EVER-CHANGING POLICIES

Why I don’t post regularly. . . .

Martha Achol relaxes as Rachel Abuk braids her hair.

Martha Achol relaxes as Rachel Abuk braids her hair.

Rachel Abuk braids Martha Achol's hair.

Rachel Abuk braids Martha Achol’s hair.

EVER-CHANGING POLICIES

In an earlier post describing our experience at the Juba airport, I had said that we were charged $200 each for our $100 visa and given a receipt for only $100. I went back through the receipts and saw that there are two of them. $100 for the Visa plus a $100 FINE for not having travel papers. On my last three trips into South Sudan, I was able to get a Visa at the airport, and pre-acquired travel papers were not needed. All the paperwork could be filled out at the airport. So this was not a matter of corruption, but rather one of rapidly changing rules without notification.

INTERNET

In Duk Payuel, Internet is often unavailable to us because we are at the ASAH compound where I’m busy with the students and staff. We must walk to the JDF Lost Boys clinic (15 or 20 minutes each way), but because there are too many computers (including those of our staff) the load on their small bandwidth often makes it too slow to upload pictures, or to access our website, or Facebook to post.

It can take 15 minutes or more to download a days’ worth of emails just to see that there ARE emails, and then it can take a minute or five or ten or longer to load individual emails, especially if there are attachments. When I feel impatient, which is often, I remind myself that it is close to a miracle to have access to WiFi in this very remote village where there isn’t any phone service, and the lone vehicle belongs to the clinic. JDF Lost Boys Clinic would be pleased if we contributed toward the cost. An increase in bandwidth would be $300/month. This still wouldn’t be US-speedy, but it would be better than dial-up used to be.

SCHEDULE

Also, we’ve been busy, busy, busy. First with students, then in Juba buying materials and supplies. I’ll try to catch up over the next week or two, and even after my return to the US.

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