Thursday, February 12, 2004

I spent the day in San Francisco for the kick-off meeting for Sutter's West Bay eICU implementation.

After initially settling into Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania pretty well, the Nooter's have been facing some infrastructure and cost issues. Some excerpts from Rob's recent e-mails include:

I have been having a lot of systems failure issues. The electricity goes out regularly, and we have to start up the generator... our water pump is having problems. Our area does not have central water through main lines. So we buy it a tanker truck load at a time. It is stored in an
underground tank, and then run through a sand filter and pumped up to a roof tank (1,000 liters) and then another pump provides it to the house. Every one of those parts of the chain has had some problem.

In addition, the satellite TV system we got started on Tuesday also went out, some problem with the programming of the decoder box...

One of the facts of life here is that the cost of energy and telephone time is extremely expensive...Our monthly electricity could easily run in the $300 to $500 range if we do not limit things...Gasoline is also about 70 cents a liter or $2.80 a gallon...Cell phone time runs from 36 cents a minute to 50 cents a minute. Land lines also charge similar fees, and every call is a toll call.
Reflecting on Rob's e-mails, it is amazing how many things American's take for granted. We don't spend any time thinking about the availability of electricity, water, gasoline and telephone or television service, let alone working to make sure that we have those things. We get very bent out of shape whenever any of things don't work for any length of time.

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