11-14 - Gaylord Last night I got a lot done on a proposal for outsourcing in Madagascar for the Francophone world. It works much better than the America/India model, and I suspect that it will be a big win in a few years. Will I be involved? Probably not. But I'll show the proposal to a few people. Both Momy and Lanto are intrigued, and it's cheap as an outside investment. It's not completely done, so I work from about 6:45 am to 8am or so on the document, then high-tail it to SALFA, pounding my way up Cardiac Hill, arriving before 8:45, and finding a large number of people standing out front. They're in earshot of the minister upstairs and the singing, and I wonder if there's an important announcement or guest speaker, but since it's all in Malagasy, it won't mean anything to me, SO! voosh on by I go, whispering "Pardon," as I pass through the group. I kick the outsourcing document into MSWord and format it up, and then check email and such. All ducks wind up in a row by 10am, and it's time for my second presentation on Web pages (making them, that is). This time, we're talking graphics and the gimp -- a free photoshop-like image editing package. The class goes spectacularly well, largely because I take a picture of the group and put Rivo's head on two other people. It works pretty nicely. We cover cropping and sizing and jpeg compression quality. We also cover Google and Yahoo and getting listed and found by people who aren't necessarily looking for a charity to give money to, but who would give five bucks if the clickie were there above a recipe for Zebu and Greens. Momy takes me to his home for lunch. His wife, who works in the TB project at SALFA, is an incredible cook. INCREDIBLE! The food is amazing, and Momy keeps demurring that it's just your basic Malagasy meal, but it's pork, chicken, tomatoes with onions, and potatoes with vinaigrette, and of course rice and the traditional zebu and greens. It's all stupendous. And his kids, like Lanto's and Rivo's, are adorable. His, though, are somehow even more so, based on their shy gregariousness. Ready with a few words of English and both excited and tickled to deliver them and be responded to. Momy is a very, very lucky man. But when we get back to SALFA, I realize that I have forgotten the headset, so I cannot initiate any Skype calls. However, I get the software ready, and email both Mark and Rene asking them to subscribe to Skype (it's free) and be ready tomorrow morning for a call. Hasine and Bob and I just get started with our class when the computer dies. This is very bad news. There had been a power surge, earlier today, and the computer made a popping sound. When Hasine was working with Excel (I was showing him functions -- he's much less confident with it than he was with Word) it rewarded his successful entry of a function by crashing. I had heard the hard drive plunk into park a minute or so before, and what had happened, I soon knew, was that the hard drive had stopped turning. After much futzing about, I determined that the hard drive had simply stopped spinning. Very bad. Nothing would make it power up. I took it out, with the aim of testing it at SALFA. Dinner was late, tonight. We had a guest! Gaylord is here from Chicago, by way of several countries in Africa. He's from 79th and Wabash, right near that open-air fruit market I've been to a few times. He remembers me vaguely from my time at the ELCA out near Higgins road (or was it Cumberland?). His job, here, and all over Africa, is to act as liaison between governments and missionaries and to act as a manager for the missionaries of Africa. Big job. Lots of travel. And he's filled with great stories. He makes me an offer which is both a great opportunity and a problem. He can find me work for my sabbaticals in Africa. Lots of places and lots of work. It's IDEAL. Only I have to find out, gently, if he can place me only in health care areas, as I'm not interested in promoting the word of God, just doing his work, or rather what work he would do if He existed in the form that Lutherans see Him. ...That's a story for another time, but for now, I'm only interested in Jesus when Jesus comes with a stethoscope. Honorine has gotten mangos for our fruit salad, tonight. She is a jewel.