Arrival in Katakhali

We made to Katakhali yesterday afternoon, arriving at around 4:30 pm. We were on the very slow local ferry for about 19 or 20 hours (quicker than the usual 24 hours due to strong river currents). The last stop was Rangabali, the neighbording island. Then we took a powered country boat to Barobaishdia Island (about 45 minutes) and then walked about two miles to our place in Katakhali Village. The girls did really well on the trip. The scenery of the rivers and the little islands along the way was truly spectacular. On the ferry boat, Koli ate all kinds of things yesterday, including two freshly boiled duck eggs that were bought from a village along the way.

It was really warm yestereday – around 80 F and sunny. On the walk to the village, we were greeted by the whole community. We also immediately found baby goats and lambs to pick up. Nanu’s (my grandmother’s) house looks really great — was totally rebuilt in new wood and tin last year. The tin is painted a bright cobalt blue. The health center is in bad shape – looking pretty shabby already after five years. But they have solar lights in all the big rooms (in the house and the health center) — amazing change! The village is super clean and there do not appear to be any mosquitoes. It is quite interesting to be back after 19 years. There are now a lot of motorcycles on the little dirt path in the village.

Today is the big annual school picnic where we feed 200 kids. The people here are up since 4 am preparing. It’s early and the roosters are calling. Later we will meet with the women to discuss the sari project.

My Grameen portable modem works — so I do have internet.

My best,

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