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