Thursday, January 23, 2014

Rhythm and blues

It's hard to know yet what the normal pace of life is here...

Things seem to start later, end earlier and take longer than we're used to.  The sun in this season comes up after 9am, and sets after 5pm.

Children, even small ones, stay up until 11pm or midnight and sleep until 9am.

Morning rush hour is from 8:30 - 10 am; evening rush hour is from 6 - 7:30 pm. And there's a lunchtime rush hour from 1-3pm as a lot of people head home for lunch. During all of these periods local traffic slows to a crawl.  Everyone seems to take a full lunch hour -- if not two.

Meetings take place without much advance notice - call someone and if they're available then you head out immediately for a meeting.  Schedule it two weeks in advance and they will be called away when you show up at the original time.

Simple repairs take three weeks for parts to be delivered, but you can get water delivered the same day.

Are you carrying your foreign passport on your person? No? Watch out!

The common theme seems to be: rules and stamps.  (Remember the notaries?) People love to make up rules as to why something can't happen. You've followed all the instructions you were given?  Good. But you also need this one last document or hoop to jump through.   And every transaction or interaction demands a certification by stamp.  Attending a workshop? You need to show a stamped certificate of attendance to your boss on your return to the office. Purchasing office supplies?  Your receipt must be stamped for you to exit the store with your purchases.

No comments:

Post a Comment