Tag Archives: technology

Sweet Charity? On Volunteering

26 Jun

Z pretending to fly an Antonov cargo plane, Sihanoukville, Cambodia

When volunteering, it's good to have a handle on your capabilities.

I have an aversion to the idea of volunteering overseas which dates back to a hospital bed in small town Mali.

It wasn’t the extended families cooking on open fires in the grounds, the babies too weak to cry, or even the emaciated woman hawking bloody sputum onto the floor beside my bed that did it.

Nor was it an operating theatre that would have had Florence Nightingale reaching for the ether, through which I ventured on an all-too regular basis to the surgeons’ bathroom. (Kind of them to share. But still…)

It was the kid from the Peace Corps. And, of course, he was trying to help. Continue reading

Mains Electricity: a Good Thing, Clearly…

25 Jan

So the theoretical immediacy of this medium has been slightly kiboshed by the near-total absence of electricity and mobile reception in our first tropical idyll, Long Beach, Koh Chang, which is, on balance, a beautiful thing, and surprisingly rare.

It will be a shame when the change comes, although I guess, as with so much stuff, we will wonder how we ever did without it rather than mourning the loss of a perhaps already artificial solitude. Continue reading