Friday, October 19, 2007

Muddy Season

After a few days of sunshine, the rain has returned.  It looks like we are heading into the "muddy season" evidenced by the fact that while jumping up into my 4Runner this morning I managed to get mud all over my pants leg.  Of course I say "jump" into my 4Runner because at my impressive height of 5'3 + 3/4ths (that 3/4 is very important because its nearly another inch!!!) I can't just get in but I have to perform a little hop & jump routine in order to get into the car :)  But back to the weather, it's muddy season.  There aren't really the standard four seasons in Kosovo but three seasons.  The three seasons are dust, mud, and frozen and refer to the dirt that seems to cover every inch of the roads and sidewalks in Kosovo.
With the dropping temperatures and the typical maintenance problems at the power plants, the new power schedule for Pristina is 5:1 (five on, one off) which isn't that bad although you'll still hear people whining as they've become accustomed to 24/7 power since last year.  C-areas which are mainly villages and minority areas have a 3:3 schedule which means they essential live with power for half of the day.  It is expected that the tender for the new Kosovo power plant will be completed sometime this year but it will still be many years before the power situation gets better as the current power plants are fairly old, poorly maintained, and the quality of the management is questioned by many.  But at least I can say that over the years the power situation has gotten much better and I believe that credit should be given to those that worked hard to repair the plants and better the living situation.  Back in the beginning of the mission, we would go days without knowing when the power would come back on and there was no published schedule.  Now you can be guaranteed that you'll have power at least half of the day and you can also visit the KEK website to see when the power will be on.

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