Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

California visit

Thanksgiving day turkey ride, Los Gatos, CA

Mount Dana, Yosemite, CA

San Francisco and Westlake, CA

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

World Bank blog

My friend, David Lawrence, who works for the World Bank here in Aceh, posted an entry on the World Bank's Private Sector Development Blog where he posts from time to time. He referred to me as 'fit and trim' which I think is an overstatement.

I left my belly on Mount Seulawah

Monday, October 22, 2007

Day 2 on Nias Island

My staff and I are on Nias Island for a week to conduct topographical surveys of 8 school locations spread out over the island. In the past two days, we finished north Nias. One of the locations is in a small town near the northern cape, and one of the most inaccessible spots on the island.

The drive from our office in the capital city (or should I say, town) of Grung Sitoli was three long hours on a severally pot holed dirt road crossing two collapsed bridges. Later, we past a beach where the driver pointed out how the surf moved out 1000ft since the two massive earthquakes two years ago. Is this geological uplifting?

The town of Dahewa felt like a frontier town with its muddy streets and decaying wooden buildings. This town has seen a lot, it was the closest point to the 8.6 Nias Earthquake in March 2005. And it's not that much further from the epicenter of the 9.4 earthquake which triggered the Asian Tsunami three month earlier.

The existing school here is flattened. All that is left is a torn up foundation and a small pile of rumble at the far end in which the school kids like to climb at recess. Classes are currently being held in "phase 2" temperately school buildings, constructed out of small precast concrete columns bolted together and covered with thin plywood. Phase 1 housed the classes in tents, which still stands today. You can still make out the baby blue UNICEF logo on the frayed and weathered tarps.

School kids in northern Nias

Kids love to watch the survey, northern Nias

One of the bridges we had to cross.

Kids climbing the remains of there old school building.

Class being held in the phase 2 temperately school building

Back in Nias

Nias welcomed me with a bumpy plane ride in a sky filled with dark turbulent clouds. The small propeller plane dropped and then shot up then flung side to side, at times I swore the plane flew sideways for a brief moment. Rain upon rain upon rain. It doesn’t pour here, it thunders rain.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

more photos of Japan

I posted the rest of the photos on Flickr

Back from Japan

Toyko's Shinjuku District at night. Out of this world!

Tokyo's Shibuya District, still out of this world!

Matsumoto Castle near the Japan Alps. so cool!

At Nijo Castle in Kyoto. been there, done that

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Eucalyptus Hills Ride

Erik and Jerry

Guido on a small bike

Mt Seulawah Agam




Jerry's pimp bike, another homeboy from San Jose!

Sunday, September 30, 2007

on the tarmac at Simeulue

Nias Island

Nias airport

one of the schools on Nias

driving up the west coast near Calang

uninhabited island

flying over Simeulue Island

coastline of Simeulue

Pile foundation at school near Meulaboh

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Tuesday, September 25, 2007


Flight to Meulaboh for some site visits.

Friday, September 21, 2007

School designs in Aceh

Here are some architectural renderings of the schools currently under design and construction.