15 February 2006

Back in Arusha

Hi everyone,

Long time without an update, sorry. I am back in Arusha. I returned from Dar on Saturday in an air-conditioned bus, which made the trip 100% better. While I was in Dar I spent two days getting my Costech permit (a requirement for doing research in TZ) and two days at immigration getting my residence permit. The entire thing was a frustrating endeavor in that customer service doesn’t really exist in this country and you have to vigilantly follow your paperwork through the process to get anything done. Things like “oh the lady who types the permit isn’t here today” and “I forgot to tell you yesterday, buy you also need…” are common. Immigration was the most frustrating and I almost had to stay in Dar over the weekend just to get my residence permit, but luckily things worked out okay. Originally, when I turned in the paper work for the residence permit they told me to return on the 16th. I pleaded with the guy and he said come back on the 13th. Well, that was last Thursday and I didn’t want to be stuck in Dar over the weekend (with no one around and not a whole lot to do) so I went back Friday morning under the pretense that I had forgotten to pay (when really I didn’t need to pay until Monday). Because I was back and the guy was in a good mood (and I like to think, because I was dressed as a Tanzanian and trying to speak Swahili) I got my permit at 4pm on Friday. There were actually two things that needed to be finished with the residence paperwork, but they said I could do it in Arusha, and sure enough, immigration in Arusha finished the permit in 30 minutes (I was shocked, things went so much smoother here than in Dar). Anyway, I’m still working on paperwork stuff but without the headache I had last week in Dar and Craig (one of my professors) and I have been meeting with hunting companies and paving the way for my research and the work of Savannas Forever. With all the crazy running around I have been doing, it was great to be back with my host family this weekend and be able to spend Sunday washing cloths and playing with the kids. Hope you all are well!


Anonymous owl3445 said...

way to go Jen, congrats on your battles with the bureaucracy !! But what exactly does "dressed like a Tanzanian" mean? Anyway, we are baby sitting in Tosa for 4 days. If you really want to observe organized chaos, you should see drop off and pick up at kindergarten.

10:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hello there, Jen, this is your cousin Bobby. Uncle Gary sent everyone your blog in an email, so that's how I wound up here. Sounds like you're doing some neat stuff over there. What exactly are you studying this time around? And are you flying through NJ again on your way back? If I remember correctly, the first time you went over, you switched at Newark, and were in NJ for a night. Any such luck this time? If so, we would all love to see you. In case you don't have my email, it's b0bbyj33@aol.com (that's a zero, not an "O"). Hope to hear from you soon! (but I know you're busy, so don't worry about getting back to me too fast)

10:39 AM  
Blogger Jacob said...

Hello, Jennifer!

Great blog you've got here. It is definately a fun read.

What kind of research are you doing? It sounds a lot more engaging than what the word 'research' is typically associated with.

4:32 PM  
Anonymous Michelle said...

Brad gave us a sneak preview of all the shenanigans. Glad to hear it all worked out!!

5:32 PM  

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