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Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Another Day in Zimbabwe

Today was bill paying day. we set off - first to report low voltage on our power supply. We have for some reason unbeknown to anyone been connected to Tafara Substation - some way from us. Most people in our area have been cut off or had low power since yesterday morning (we were 20 hours off!). Even the Presidential residence had no power!

The fault appears to lie in a blown part. it is being corrected.

Next we went to take finger print forms to CID to get police clearance for our younger son for his work permit for SA. (He has been back in Zimbabwe for about a month is two years so why he needs new ones each time we do not understand!). We were ushered through a crowd of waiting African locals as if we were royalty. Could not believe it!

He had the prints taken yesterday but the police station in Borrowdale did not have a receipt book so they could not take the 2,000 dollars needed to pay for them. On arrival at CID headquarters we were told they could not process the forms until payment had been made which could be done at any police station that had receipts!

So to Avondale - they were friendly, 'Compliments of the season and how can we help you?' - they took the money (but as 2,000 is no longer accepted we had to fork up 500000,000 - the smallest accepted!

Back to CID where the forms were submitted and we were told that it would be ready tomorrow.

From there to pay our telephone account - 2 billion dollars - the equivalent of about 10 US cents!!!!! As we cannot get money transfer ed into our bank accounts and as the money cannot be taken out of the stock exchange as they are not functioning at the moment out only option was to offer 1 USD - we were duly receipted with the amount of 15 billion dollars - now 13 billion in credit on our account!!!!

Now to pay the electricity account - they will not take USD so we were unable to pay them not being able to access Zimbabwe Dollars - what a laugh!!!!! We noticed a rubbish bin (cardboard box with papers and a lot of small denomination local currency. We asked what it was doing there and were told it had been thrown away so we asked it we could take it and the answer was 'yes'! It amounted to over 57 million dollars and is now worthless! Perhaps someone will buy a note or two from us!

Then to report our telephone out of order. as we walked in the technicians recognised us and assured us that service would be resumed by lunch time.

We visited my friend Sue for some toast and cheese and a glass or so of wine and by the time we returned home - the telephone worked!!!!!!

Power voltage still low but we are managing.

Another exciting day in Harare!

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