PHOTO GALLERY 1
Finally, I figured out how to put up some stills. They're small, and the resolution falls off if I enlarge them too much, but I think you can get a good sense of the place from what you see here, and the files are of manageable enough size that I can put up a lot more than I could with video.
This is the front of my house, and if you look closely, you can see the discarded toilet, sitting ever vigilant, right at the "front" door. That door doesn't get used anyway. From these images, it looks like the place has a "sharecropper shack" type feel to it. In real life, it's not quite that bad, and this house is actually one of the nicer ones here. It was built for American administrators during the Trust Territory days.
Here's the other side of the house. If you walked around the right-hand edge of the photos above, you'd then come around the far corner that's shown here, if that helps orient you. There's a small screened off porch off one of the bedrooms. I haven't used it yet, largely because the "view" is nothing but jungle five feet away, but I suppose it might be a nice place to relax.
The old soldier. Essentially a Toyota station wagon, but with the steering wheel on the wrong side. You shouldn't be able to take the key out and walk away while the transmission is still in "Drive," but you can. I've walked around the the wrong side to get in about 15 times already, and have turned on the wipers on the left hand side of the steering column when I meant to turn on the turn signal (which is on the right hand side) more times than I wish to count. But it runs well enough and gets me where I need to go.
This gives you just a taste of the view out of the back of the carport. The picture doesn't do it justice. It's incredible. In the foreground is the roof of my "neighbor's" house, situated below me on the hill. Like I said, houses are built where there's space, and he gets to his by a steep gravel path between my carport and the house next door. The land on the horizon is Babeldoab, and the "island" dead center in the middle of the frame is where the road to the bridge makes a 90 degree turn to the left. The K-B Bridge remains are just out of frame midway up the right side.
Here's a little bit of a "close-up" of the remains of the north span of the K-B Bridge, as seen in the distance from my house. If you look very closely (sorry about the lack of resolution), you can see the support gently slope up from the right hand side, and then when the support ends, the bridge deck sharply pitches down into the water. I'll get more close-ups soon, since you can still see one of the cars that was on it when it collapsed stuck on the bridge deck.The crane in the background is not involved with the bridge, but with some other project. The bridge remains have been left like that for 2 full years, but the President has said that now that the lawsuit over the collapse has settled, he'd like to get the remains cleared out by the end of the year.
When the judge said the house had "no ceilings," he wasn't kidding. This is looking up from the living room, with the hallway opening in the lower right. As you can see if you peek down the hallway, the entire house, except for one bedroom and the bathroom, is like this. If you think about it, it's just like living in a ski chalet, except there's no fireplace. And it never snows. Not only does it never snow, it never even gets cold. I brought a sweatshirt "in case it gets chilly at night," but it never does. If you come to Palau, don't bother bringing anything with long sleeves.
Well, now that I've figured out how to do this, and realize that I can put up a bunch of images without overloading the page, look for more additions to the photo gallery soon. If you would like a photo of anything put up-- "I wanna see a gecko!" or "What does Surangel's look like?" or "Let's see Brian naked!"-- send me an e-mail at brian @ stuffedwombat.com.
Gallery 2 >>
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