I read in the newspaper yesterday and today about how they are going to do all sorts of improvements in the Colonial Zone. (read the Colonial Zone News for information about these new ideas) This is mostly a good thing as, in my opinion, we do need more police on duty in the streets. They have many now but they usually stop foot duty around 9PM then it is only police in cars, trucks and motorcycles. I don’t understand why they do not have police in the streets, standing around at night, when the most criminal stuff happens. But then I do not understand many things here in DR and in the entire world for that matter.
The security cameras are also a good thing except for those humans doing things that they do not want others to see like picking up the opposite sex when they have a spouse at home. This could be interesting, especially if these camera are made public for anyone to view. I would for sure tune in to see who is doing what in the street.
They are saying that they are going to put all the utility lines underground. I think this happened on another street here and they forgot where they put the lines and had to tear up the street a second time to find them, but then I could be wrong about this. the only problem that I have about underground lines is what will the tourists take pictures of? At least 10 tourists each day here on Calle Isabel la Católica take pictures of the crazy electric and phone lines. I know when I was a tourist many years ago I took pictures of these wild wires in the streets. Will this make the Zone less interesting to those humans that are wowed by the uniqueness of the place?
I do think they need to make the horse cart drivers feed their horses. This to me is a terrible thing to see these skinny, rib-sticking-out horses pulling carts. They also need to make sure that all the roads and parks have lights that work for more security.
I also am for the business being open late night like they used to be. So many businesses have suffered because of the curfew they placed on them. And the museums and such open until maybe 8 or 9PM would be a good thing also as long as there is security around.
I decided to do a little laundry today since we had water, electric and the sun was out for a change. I dragged the washer to the patio and commenced washing.
Remember this is not an automatic machine. It washes in one side and when that’s done you have to move the clothes to the other side which is the spinner to extract the water (there is another blog story called “My Dominican Wash Machine Experience” if your interested).
I connected the hose and did the first load. I put the clothes in the spinner and the power went out. I had to hand squeeze all the clothes, a bit of a workout for these old hands. I have noticed that the water doesn’t drain out of the spinner like it should for a really long time so since I couldn’t wash anymore I decided to investigate.
I moved the spinner thingy to the side and peeked in. There was something navy blue way down inside. I tried to reach in and get it but couldn’t so I got my trusty tongs and dived in. Out came this navy blue silky blob. Sort of nasty because who knows how long its been stuck in there. I looked at it, holding it by the tongs as I really didn’t want to touch it.
It ended up that it was a pair on mens underpants. Fill cover briefs, silky navy blue. Now go figure. I don’t wear mens undies. I never washed mens undies in my machine. I hope I don’t know any man that would wear those type of poopoo undies (poopoo undies, that’s a quote from the movie Young Frankenstein which is one of my favs).
Now, how did those interesting undies get into my machine, wedged way down into the drain in the water extractor? If only the machine could talk. It will forever remain a mystery.
Addendum – I was just reminded that I did wash a male friends clothes once but he defiantly did not wear silk undies, especially as big as those ones were.
Will the mysterious silk, poopoo undie, wash machine using man please step forward….
>I wrote about living without electric before in this blog. But I came across this video and it brought back lots of memories. I remember when I was just a tourist in DR. One of the first things I told friends when I returned home was about the electric lines and how people seem to steal the electric. I had no idea then just how bad it was in real life. When I moved to DR I would watch the tourists take pictures of the electric lines. Isabel la Catolicá and El Conde in Colonial Zone was a favorite electric line picture taking spot. I had to check my line every so often because there was one neighbor that connected into my electric. I found out he didn’t do it on his own, the landlord told him to do it and to pay me for it. He never told me and of course, never paid me so I cut his electric. Another neighbor, she had a bar. She stole the electric all the time. They would come and cut the line (give her a fine I’m sure) and the next day she had it connected again. If it was in the evening and she couldn’t get the line connected in time she would call up to me and ask for an extension cord so at least she could have music in the bar. Then she just used candles for light. I couldn’t do much in my apartment when she used my electric. My lights were really dim and I was afraid to try the computer so I would just go down to her place and hang out. I knew she wouldn’t pay me for the electric so I just drank my pay. That was fine with me. Now check out this video. This guy is on top of the pole. Sitting there working, using a machete it seems. There is no ladder so he must have shimmied up there. I am afraid to play with any electricity. When I had to hook op my outside light I made sure all the power was turned off. Checked it with a voltage thing, and I was still a bit shaky. This guy looks like hes ready to have a beer sent up or even happily spend the afternoon atop that pole.
>I was talking with a puter pal last night. I was telling him about the electric in DR. Or maybe I should say the lack of electric in DR.
Living without electric really isn’t as bad as most would think. I usually bought fresh food everyday and there was only me and the dog so I didn’t need a big stash of food. I only have one of those college dorm fridges. A half thing. Its good for me. The biggest problem was getting used to not stocking up on food like I did when I lived in USA. I’d buy the large portions and freeze stuff so I didn’t have to shop much (I hate shopping). I’m also a condiment freak. It takes me 10 minutes just getting all the condoemnts on the food before I can even start eating. So I had to cut back on condiment usage also. One good thing about a little fridge is that when the power did go out I didn’t have much to lose. The bad thing was the freezer was so small I could only keep ice in it and it took forever for the ice to freeze.
Anyhow..back to the electric. Sin luz. No problemo! When the power went out the people would go to the street. I lived across from a park and the neighbors would all go to the park or sit outside. It was nice knowing and being able to hang out with the neighbors. Not like in USA where most people don’t really know their neighbors. I never wanted to hang with the neighbors in USA but in DR its the thing to do.
So the power goes out its a chance to not be in front of the puter (I call the computer the puter just so you all know) or the TV. I did get some reading done also. Its a chance to get out. Take a walk. Meet some people.
In the night it does get a little bad. If there’s no generators the streets are dark. I used to carry a little flashlight with me incase I was out walking when the power went out then I could see so I didn’t fall in a sidewalk hole! Just stay close to home. Pretend your living in the pioneer days and read by lantern light. Or go to bed early. It can get hot without the fan but sweating is good sometimes. Cleans out the pours.
Have to look at it with a positive attitude. It can’t be changed so just accept it and make the best out of it. I think maybe I was preparing for this move and didn’t know it. I used to camp a lot. The roughing it kind of camping. So maybe all the camping experience was just preparing me for my new life in Dominican Republic.
One never knows where life will lead. And I’m so glad mine led me to DR!
By the way, this little free program is great to check your spelling.