Postcards from the Edge

of Bangladesh

Aren’t some people just so nice

So here I am in Miss J’s flat in Gulshan. Man, it’s nice. Over my time here in Bangladesh I’ve totally forgotten that a house should be a home. It’s a gorgeous flat, very tastefully decorated, light, airy and spacious. Everything my place in Rangamati is not. Re spacious, it’s definitely not furnished in the typical Bangladesh fashion where as much furniture as possible is rammed into every available bit of space. But then I have just spied another room, where it appears that this typical surplus-to-requirements-furniture appears to have been stored away. Good interior decorating idea.

In some ways it makes me want to hurry up, leave Bangladesh, move back to CT , renovate my flat, and live in a nice place again. And it makes me want to go out and buy some Bangladeshi nick nacks to take back with me. There are some lovely handicrafts to be bought here, and I really want some reminders of this time I’ve spent here in the Desh. Good thing there are some Christmas fetes and arts and craft things here in Dhaka this weekend.

I was originally planning to go into the office today. But ja. I think I’ll stay here instead. I’m pretty tired, I left my house at 8pm last night, and arrived here in Gulshan at 9am this morning. Had my usual ‘maximum misunderstanding’ with the rickshaw wallah. ‘I am going to Gulshan One’. In Bangla, ‘Ami Gulshan ek jabo’. See, easy. Even I can’t get that wrong. Ok fine, 30 taka. After about 5 minutes, I check with the richshaw wallah that there is some synergy between where he is taking me, and where I actually want to go. I’ve been in situation way too many time before not to check. Bhai, Gulshan ek he? Brother, Gulshan One yes? Well no. Obviously not. I still don’t understand why I have this problem every time I get on a rickshaw. Turned out I couldn’t get to Gulshan One on a rickshaw (reasons still unknown). Had disembark and then hassle to find a CNG, which charged me 150 taka to get to Gulshan One. But then at least he actually got me to Gulshan One. I know I was ripped off, but after a 12 hour journey and facing Dhaka rush hour with no other CNGs in sight, I took the path of least resistance.

Turned up here to meet J just as she was leaving for the office. What a lovely girl. Even had pastries from the Raddisson in the fridge for me. I mean, honestly, I’ve died and gone to heaven. Clearly leading the VSO life in Bangladesh has made me very easy to please.

So now I plan to spend the day working in the flat (read ‘watching DVDs and taking an afternoon nap’) and a bit of a wonder out into Gulshan for lunch. Will do the whole office vibe tomorrow. Today I’m going to enjoy this great flat. And even wash some clothes. In an actual washing machine. This is a big day for me.

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