Happy new year! Since I last posted, it's been mostly work - construction is progressing, as expected. We've been very busy finalizing the design, managing the construction, and coordinating the project with host nation contacts, among other things. The Royal We have poured the first permanent concrete components including building foundations, so the progress is very real, six to seven days a week.
Outside of work, we managed to squeeze in two trips: one was to Zakouma National Park, which was very cool. The variety of landscapes was really amazing. We were there right at the beginning of their viewing season so the full animal contingent hadn't arrived yet, but we still saw all kinds of wildlife: giraffes, baboons, hogs, crocodiles, deer-like-things, birds, water buffalo, even one elephant! Here are just a few photos:
Our second trip was back to the US for our first rest and relaxation trip. And also for me to have some dental work done, so that was pretty great too. But we packed lightly specifically so we could bring back about 100 pounds of food you can't buy here in N'Djamena: tuna steaks, manchego cheese, Snickers bars...good stuff.
It didn't take long to get back into the swing of things here, although I admit there was a readjustment/recovery period from the rampant first world problems in the US. Now there are quite a few extra curricular goings-on here, including today's announcement of an imminent regional military force to be based in N'Djamena to combat Boko Haram. Fortunately we haven't seen any significant changes in the city here yet despite the recent BH activity nearby. It should be an interesting next few months for work and otherwise considering things are heating up in a variety of ways, including March through May being the hottest time of year. I need to look into one of those ice cream makers...and how to make ice cream...
(This post written while listening to Weird Al Yankovic First World Problems.)