What started as an awareness raising and ethnographic styled walk through Sierra Leone, this site now details the encounters of a not so academic academic who spends more time occupying Wall Street and squats than a university...

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Chilling... but productive

So I decided to spend the night outside in the hammock last night.  What I was thinking I am not sure.  The temperature was 50F (10C) when I went out there at about midnight.  After jostling around trying to get it all situated I pretty much wide awake so it took a while to get to sleep.  I slept pretty soundly until about 3am when I woke up and was freezing.  I had taken a down comforter that was a possibility to go with me to SL, and had clothes on, but it just wasn't enough.  Once I got inside I realized it was 46F (8C) out, the coldest it apparently ever gets in Sierra Leone is about 60F (15.5C) at night.  Not the best test environment, but what choice do I have?

Anyway, I learned a few things.  Sleeping in a hammock is not difficult, but sleeping in something in a hammock is a different story.  Everything slouches down towards the middle.  So you end up with your feet and head sticking out of whatever your in.  Not a bad thing if it isn't too cold.  Sleeping bags come back to mind as you can just simply get in them before you even get in to the hammock and your in!  But who wants to be in a sleeping bag rated for 40F (4.5C) when its 80F (26.5C) outside when you get in it?  This sleeping scenario seems so simple... but it is HAUNTING ME!!!  lol..  ;)
How can I sleep?!?

The underside of the hammock gets chilly.  Not sure why, maybe the nylon material, who knows.  But using a blanket was tricky as it is not fixed into anything.  I mean it worked and would, but it's tricky.  The real issue was just the cold.  Without insulation from the ground you are just up suspended in the air - cold air.  I started to see the draw of the ones that have the insulation and bug shield underneath.  But they are another $100!!

It is really nice to just be able to cocoon yourself up in there.  Down blanket, flannel pillow, not bad.  But I won't be carrying a big fluffy flannel down pillow - regrettably!!  But you definitely can benefit from a pillow.  Not sure of the best way to do that is, but shouldn't be too hard, they make things for that.

Otherwise the day was productive.  Still no word back from Kaps on how far they are getting on the questions about the Track facility.  I did get an email from my cousin Rachel (who is my sustainability and building advisor;) about a conference in NYC two days before I leave that would be great to go to.  Its about sustainable building in the developing world and would really benefit me.  I also have been thinking that it would be great to think about more than just a track at the site, perhaps a school as well.  Easily gets kids involved, and I know that the concept of a school and a athletic field together would make good sense to possible American donors.  It wouldn't be part of the "Gamechangers" proposal, but I'm thinking beyond that and not assuming that funding will happen.

I ordered a computer yesterday through Weldon Computers, yes my dad's company.  ;)  Good advice and good deals!! lol.  It should actually arrive today as it is only coming from New Jersey.  Its actually more than I needed in a lot of ways, but I had to have bluetooth, thus had to get a bit more than the original option.  I was assuming I'd come in under budget with it, however... no such luck.  Even as it was only one thing, I had to get other upper end features just to get that one.  I also heard yesterday that due to "miscommunication", and/or perhaps a bit of human apathy, some work that I had lined up for before I leave isn't going to happen.  I'm pretty much screwed financially with this trip.  One revenue source after another keeps drying up, falling through, whatever...  I've just gotta prioritize and maybe go without much food/emergency money.  Hence the sleeping arrangement may also just take care of itself!!  I can't afford a sleeping bag even if I found one that would work (which I don't know that I have)!!  lol.  But hey, that is life.  I could possibly have other forms of income right now if I was to be a bit dishonest or as I see it unethical, but I won't do that, so struggle I must...  so is life...  ;)

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