So far, we really like it here. Our social sponsors are awesome, the community is really friendly, there’s lots to do, the food is great, and our apartment has air conditioning!
We did a grand tour of the major grocery stores over the weekend, and I was surprised by all the things you can find here. The commissary (when stocked, anyways) has bacon, pesto, guacamole, puff pastry, and all kinds of things you’d usually see on the shelves in a U.S. grocery store. Some of it might be expired, but, hey, then it’s 25-50% off. At some of the local grocery stores we saw Jif peanut butter, Smuckers jam, freshly baked challah, hard taco shells, and loads of other things. One of the stores we went to, Lavender, had 11 different kinds of lentils! And the spice selection is amazing.
There’s a nice bakery called Holey, which has wonderful pastries and coffee. I had a piece of cake from there and it wasn’t as good as the croissant I’d had the day before, so I’ll be sticking to the pastries. There’s another good coffee shop called North End where we were able to buy some freshly ground beans.
In our apartment, we’ve noticed that sometimes there is no cold water. I didn’t understand why the clothes that came out of the washing machine that were supposed to be washed at the temperature of “snow flake” (rather than 30, 40, 60, 80, or 100 degrees celsius) were warm. Well, apparently wherever the washing water is stored isn’t immune to the Dhaka heat. So, no cold water. We take showers with the knob mostly on “cold” and the water that comes out of the faucet is always lukewarm.
But in the grand scheme of things, it’s not a big deal. We have running water!
I don’t think I’ve been industrious enough in washing our fruits and vegetables… we’ve only been eating peel-able fruits raw, and apparently I’m supposed to wash them with detergent before I even peel them. Oops. I’d only been rinsing them. We’re also supposed to wash vegetables, even if we’re going to cook them, with detergent too. Luckily we haven’t gotten sick yet.
Also, I vacuum every day. EVERY DAY. I don’t know how so much dust and dirt makes it’s way into our apartment. Having a dog probably doesn’t help. Plus, the tile floors are white, and Athena has black hair, so every single hair that she sheds is visible.
Before we left the US we ordered a VPN configured router, and it has been awesome. It took us a little while to figure out exactly how to link all the computers, phones, and AppleTV to it, but it’s one of the best things we put in our luggage at the last minute. No regrets there.
Let’s see… yesterday Athena got her first BarkBox in Dhaka! They ship to DPO addresses (like a PO box with an American address, so we can still receive mail sent at domestic rates), but I was wary of whether or not it would actually work since sometimes we had problems with BarkBox shipments when we lived in Virginia. And then Nate came home yesterday with Athena’s BarkBox! Her tail was wagging non-stop.
In other Athena news, a few days ago she went running with Nate, one of his colleagues, and his colleague’s dog. Usually she hates running, but they went over a mile before Nate dropped Athena off at home! Apparently she went on strike while they were walking to the meeting point and Nate had to pick her up and carry her. For some reason, the minute you put the running harness on her she won’t budge. But as soon as she saw their running buddies, she changed her mind and had a great time.
Things are good here. We’re all still adjusting in some ways, but we’re looking forward to experiencing more of what life in Bangladesh has to offer!