This week, we have been doing introductions in the ten villages that will be a part of the study sample. Again, because public organization is extremely important here, this isn't so simple of a process. We are collaborating with an elected district official (who goes by 'her honorable'). She introduces us to the ward executive officers and ward chairmen for each of the four wards. They call the village executive officers, who meet us when we arrive in the villages, dusty and tired. We meet in their offices, where her honorable officially introduces us. I have my elevator speech memorized in Kiswahili so I sound mildly professional, but usually only pick up half the rest of the conversation. One village chairman was a bit skeptical because apparently the last researchers (Savannahs Forever, actually) scared away people with their questions about land ownership. This village is newly settled, so people are apparently nervous about getting kicked off their land. Anyway, the other five have been very receptive and welcoming.
And despite the constant fundraising efforts, political posturing, overly polite language and frequent self-comparisons to Obama, its pretty fun to be working with her honorable.
Basically the rest of the time, I have been writing insane amounts of code. I underestimated how much programming I would have to do in order to fully digitize my survey and load it onto the PDAs. My experience with Pendragon Forms has been mostly good. It's not entirely user-friendly, but I am plugging along. More details to come after enumeration training and piloting in the next two weeks.
And after bumbling around in a foreign language all day, its satisfying to write discrete if-then statements and see that at least my programming is successful.