If I had known the following very strange information I might have tried to convince the voice of Providence to change the location He chose to blurt out of my mouth.
"The cities with the highest level of population congestion are: Manila, the Philippines; Cairo, Egypt; Lagos, Nigeria; Macau, off the Chinese coast; Seoul, South Korea; Dhaka, Bangladesh; Buenos Aires, Argentina; Jakarta, Indonesia; Kaohsiung, Taiwan; and Santo Domingo, the Dominican Republic. To drive a car in any of them might be the ultimate challenge." Source: http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/archive/index.php/t%20122324.html
(Doesn't that list seem like the child's game "One of theses things is not like the other..."?)
Back to the first "Why?" So I have now told you "why" I am here, and I still don't know "why" I am here. I guess it's a personality thing. In spite of appearing reckless in making this move, I still like to have a purpose, an answer, a specific goal to work towards. I have none of that, except to try to figure out 'why?'. Yet I am learning, in the heat and the relaxed culture, sometimes we are supposed to just 'be'. And maybe the why is supposed to come to me. (Will I recognize it? Do I need to recognize it? Now that's a concept to ponder - to fulfill a purpose, and not even know you are doing it. In fact, that must happen all the time!)
Before arriving in the DR, I had suspected it was to get me to rest a little. It turns out that has not been the case, at least not for the first two and a half months. Severe culture shock and difficulties with water, electricity, cell phone and internet reception all make for exhausting attempts to "fix" things!
I also thought perhaps I would be able to save money, and that is happening, though not as much as hoped. Costs in one of the most congested cities in the world, where you have to add crossing an ocean to all the other delivery costs of products, are not exactly competetive. Yet most things cost less than the States.
For example, I broke a crown in half. I was concerned about my first exposure to the dental system here, especially since low salaries tend to lead to dentists having lots of experience in pulling teeth instead of making them pretty. A female dentista and oral surgeon gave me two choices. A new crown for about $450 fully guaranteed, or glue back on the half that fell out for about $50 - no guarantee whatsoever. I chose the second; the first would still be available later if needed. Two weeks later, all is good.
What about income, you ask? I am working with graphic design clients in the United States willing to work via e-mail (which I already did with most clients anyway, without ever meeting with them in person, and often without even phone calls).
Of course, I'll keep photographing, as I have new and wonderful opportunities here. I figure after 20 years of taking pictures of palm trees in the desert, it’s time to start photographing them on the beach! But also the Botanical Gardens with water lilies! (I know, I know, I've been promising those for weeks. If you use the middle link below, you will see several new photos - including my new favorites, the Water Lily Wash Series. And some day I'll post them here...
I have on-line galleries to help represent me: http://www.qoroart.com/ and http://www.heather-kirk.artistwebsites.com/. They both print and ship. And of course anything found on http://www.heatherjkirk.com/ can be added, by request, to one of these galleries.