Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Road woes

The rain has forced us to abandon the swampy shortcut from our house to the Peace Corps house in favor of a longer, but paved, route.

Unfortunately, the pavement ends about two blocks away from our house, and while the road was never great, this wasn't much of a problem until the rains started. Monsoon-quantity rainfall has caused the hilly section of the road to split into crevasses that are at least a foot deep and getting wider every day. From the deep tire tracks, it's clear that somebody is at least attempting to drive up the road, which has the consistency of pottery-class clay, though it's hard to tell how they navigate it. I had to get off my bike yesterday at the top of the hill, when my mountain-bike tires slipped off the narrow strip I was riding on.

On my morning commute, I picked up the pavement in front of the fanciest hotel in town. Apparently the president is in town for Christmas, since this is his hometown. The hotel is on lockdown with its gate padlocked, and the building is ringed by police trucks and troops carrying machine guns. Outside, cops wearing white gloves direct traffic away and people cluster in anxious little groups, hoping for a glimpse.

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