Friday, October 13, 2006

Two Timing

There are two different times that people generally run on: 1) on time and 2) Guyanese Standard Time. There are two different approaches when running on GST. People here are either too laid back and have no concept of time or too impatient and have no concept of time. Here are a few times the Guyanese have chosen to run on their own time.

Monday 8:45am

Teachers are supposed to arrive at school at 8:15am. School is supposed to begin at 8:30 am. Teachers and students are waiting outside the locked school.
Headmaster walks onto the school compound: Good morning! I didn’t know I had the key with me this morning.

Tuesday 3:45pm
Landlord’s wife: I received your light bill on Saturday and it’s due today.
Me: What? Today?
Landlord’s wife: Yes, you must pay it today or else your light will be cut off. Then you have to pay an extra $3000 (Guyanese dollars) to get it turned on again. You can go to the Western Union tomorrow morning at 8am to make the payment.
Me: But if I go tomorrow morning will my electricity be cut off?
Landlord’s wife: Yes, probably so. But you can go tomorrow. It’s no problem.
Me: Well what time does it close today? Can I go now?
Landlord’s wife: It closes at 4:30. You’ll need to collect your money and bring it over there. But you can pay tomorrow morning on your way to school.

Monday 5:50pm
Neighbor: Hi! I was wondering if you could do me a favor. I’m applying for a job and I need a recommendation. Would you write one for me?
Me: Oh of course. When do you need it by?
Neighbor: Well I’ll need to have it printed out and bring it to them early tomorrow morning. The internet place closes at 7pm. Can you have it done before 7?

Tuesday 5:30 pm
There’s an alarming banging against my front door. I’m startled, and rush to my room to change into something more appropriate. The tempo of the knock continues faster and begins to mimic my heart rate. The knocking turns into a pounding as if there is a huge emergency.

I open the door and my downstairs neighbor is standing there. “Hi,” she says, “Can I have some food?” I’m caught off guard and look at her quizzically. “Just a joke. I want to use your phone to call my sister.”

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Question. It's 5:30 PM on a Tuesday afternoon... Why are you wearing something "inappropriate" and please provide pictures, because what I think of as inappropriate can be totally different that what you think. Please provide picture sans towel as well.