random update

Today I wore my elephant necklace that I bought in Bangkok.  I absolutely love it, I am so happy with that purchase and the money spent on it is not a big deal.  It was a bit expensive but for what it is/where it came from…totally worth it.  I have another pendant that’s a Thai letter J as well…maybe I will wear that tomorrow.

Thailand is covered in elephant stuff…they are too cute.  This keychain was one of my last minute “use up your baht” purchases in the airport.  It opens!  I don’t know what I would ever have that is small enough to fit inside, or has a need to be inside…but either way…nice!

Last weekend we went to the 5 story Aarong store in Uttara (still part of Dhaka) and did some major shopping.  I bought a bunch of Christmas gifts that I have yet to decide who gets what…I also bought myself an AMAZING jewelry box.  It’s giant, and will be a packing issue…but it’s so beautiful.  It has embroidery on the top, and is made of red leather.  I actually think the smaller Aarong store we went to before had more selection…but this store was definitely the nicer of the two.

All but the white bracelet below, are from Bangladesh.  The elephant one is from Thailand of course!  But check out that one in the front…with the tiger on it…yeah…that’s my favorite because it is AWESOME.  We have to haggle for the pricing on these and the day I got them, the guy who was there was not cooperating with me at all…he wouldn’t discount much.  It’s hard to haggle when you don’t know what things are actually worth.

An interesting thing about this country is how unsafe homes actually are.  They’re built with safety in mind, and in certain situations…it works out as intended…but there are situations where the safety measures put in…could actually be what kills someone.  Every single window of every single apartment building, has bars over it.  Every single balcony in every single apartment building, has bars covering the opening.  Things are kept out…but also, in.  If God forbid, there were a fire and you couldn’t get to the front door…you’d be trapped.  Second strange thing…there are locks on every single door.  Our front door has locks on the outside AND inside…you cannot open the door from the inside without a key.  So, again a fire…if you’re able to get to the front door…but your key is unreachable…you are trapped.  It’s the oddest thing, and it’s happened a few times where we went to open the front door for the trash lady or something, and have had to run back to our rooms to get the key for it.

After we did our shopping last weekend, we did some errands.  We checked on our custom leather shoes that are being made.  Ahem…that haven’t even been started yet.  The guy just seems to be really lazy because he was using the holiday as an excuse, and he had guaranteed to us twice, that they’d all be done by earlier dates.  Now he promised this Friday…I have very low expectations, that’s all I have to say about that.  We went to the vegetable market for the first time as well…bit different than the grocery stores we’re used to.  They had some interesting stuff there, such as star fruit…which I’d never tried before.  Yum, I want to have the cook buy me some tomorrow!

That night we went out to eat at Mermaid Cafe, which we’d been to once before.  I got Thai food and it just didn’t compare to what we’d been eating in Thailand at all…I got fish and chips the next day (we went for lunch) which was so so good though.  That night we hung out with a few friends, which was fun.  I really like spending time with my roommates…I’m thankful for the group we have here, and the fact that our start dates didn’t overlap too much. I’m really gonna miss them when I go.  No need to ask what we are doing in this picture…you wouldn’t understand!  Only makes sense if you can see it in person.

One thing that makes me happy here is that I’ve been given a different nickname…one that I’ve wanted for awhile.  The Americans call me Jess, but the people from this side of the world call me Jessie (not referring to the workers or Bengali people).  Melissa calls me by that name sometimes too but I don’t know…for some reason when it’s an American saying it…it’s just not the same.  It sounds weird without an accent to go along with it.

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