Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Frail

I'm a bit surprised to find myself posting again. I never thought I'd ever get enough time on the internet. Well i've only got half an hour left at the most, by then the electricity will cut off and whoever I'm stealing my connection from will turn off his PC. Got to love unsecured wifi spots.

Kiki's parrot died a week or so ago. His parrot was called Kiki. At the time Kiki was in Amman. While Kiki's Dad had left the parrot outside in the garage as he's done so many times before. Kiki* usually just stays on top of his cage and may sometimes just stroll around. Kiki* was a depressed parrot. This time however, he flew all the way to the street and got hit by a passing car.

Kiki's brother got kidnapped a few days ago, just a day after Kiki got back from Amman. They called asking for ransom of half a million dollars. I visited him yesterday, his mum was in an awful state. I called him today, the kidnappers have reduced the ransom to a hundred thousand dollars. Kiki's dad made it clear that he's only been able to gather twenty-thousand.

It's scary. It's easy to hear of some person that you don't know being kidnapped. But when it happens to someone you've known for years it becomes alot more real.

At home we've been expecting Nahida's brother to come back from US custody. Him and his brother got taken because some guy pointed a finger at them earlier this year while I was in the UK. The other brother was released a month ago. It was painful to hear what he had went through. I went to jail for a week during the Saddam years but it's hard to compare my experience with theirs.

Went driving to the farm the other day. I'm starting to get the hang of driving long-distance. But I noticed that as the drive went on I began increasing my speed no matter how congested the road was. I realized that my car wasn't very fuel efficient at high speeds. I asked a guy about it, because I imagined that after changing gears at around 120 kmph shouldn't it change again by the time I reach 170 kmph. He told me that it didn't and that I should try driving at 130 kmph.

The road is full of pesky check points. None of them gave me a hard time for that I'm grateful. But whenever I opened the trunk and coolbox within they asked what the cans of soda were. They suspected that it was beer I guess, which to my knowledge is legal. Iraqis hate soda water. During the mid-90s, production of anything containing sugar was banned, therefore the Pepsi factory only made soda water. I guess people got really sick of it and swore that as long as there was Pepsi they'll never drink soda water again.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Good luck, Shaggy.

Good luck to you and to Kiki's brother and Kiki and his family and to Nahida and her brother

And to everyone.

Please take care, dear.

-- Tilli (Mojave Desert)

Brian H said...

Physics: energy required to achieve a particular speed (and to maintain it against air resistance) increases as the SQUARE of the speed. SO -- doubling the speed QUADRUPLES the energy required. About a 41% speed increase DOUBLES the energy required.

So 170kph requires about 70% more fuel than 130kph.

Brian H said...

Correction: maintain speed against air resistance and internal mechanical friction.

Brian H said...

Funny story: in the early days of automobiles, a policeman pulls over a matron tearing down the street at 30 mph in a 20 mph zone. He's shocked: "Why ma'am, you're not the kind of person to speed like this! What's the problem?"

"Well, officer, I'm almost out of gas, and was hurrying to the gas pump before I ran out."