New Phone Card Option --
If any of you have tried to call us in the past 2-3 weeks, be aware that EVERYONE seems to be having trouble calling Laos lately, not just you.
That said, I have no idea what the problem is.
But, a colleague told me that uniontelecard.com is a good place to get phone cards, because it doesn't cost more to call a cell # in Laos. The ecallchina cards seem to have separate billing for calls to cell phones that are in the $2 per minute range.
Anwyay, check out uniontelecard.com -- pick Laos as the call destination and peruse the options. I think 'mega clean and stable' is pretty good, if for the name alone. But it also doesn't have the maintenance fee and other strange fees that the $0.05 per minute card does.
Also, even though most people cannot call us at the present time because of some country-wide problem, we now have an answering machine at home, so that will allow us to at least know who has tried to call.
Found out today that Jak is officially a boy. We thought he was a boy, then our housekeeper said he was a she, our American doctor friends concurred, so we thought, fine, we have a girl cat named Jak. The vet disagreed today and pronounced him a healthy BOY (with worms).
Going to Ho Chi Minh City next week for a couple days for work. We're planning it on a Thursday/Friday so we can stay the weekend.
And Katherine got a part time job at the Embassy. She will be the community liaison officer, which means basically embassy community camp counselor/cheerleader. She helps new people get accustomed to the place, plans events and outings, and is an information resource for all things Vientiane for the embassy community. I'll let her tell you more about it (and her trip to London, which ended about 9 days ago, but she's been so damn busy figuring out if our cat is a boy or a girl that she hasn't had time to tell you all about it).