Saturday, 12 February 2011

The Kazakh Connection

Quiet week, warm then cooler since yesterday and substantial rain overnight (best time for it). The plums are getting steadily eaten. That's their job. I am happy to see a nice crop of them - on the sole tree - because last year in drought-like conditions the same tree shed all its fruit in protest.

I was going to buy a wireless mouse this morning but have put it off until Tuesday.

The most interesting thing, given the large number of uninteresting things around, was a modest editing job from Kazakhstan, technically a bit challenging, to render adequate the letters of support from a university's engineering department for a whiz engineer heading to Britain to undertake post-grad studies. No names, no pack drill. Another client wanted an explanation of some pompous bureaucratese; others typically are after re-writes of their copy - not editing at all, really.

Yet another was peeved because his returned document did not contain comments of what had been changed and why: he just received back a standard corrected text. If a "tracked changes" document was required, the client needed to say so and use a different format. It is all a lot for a bear of little brain. Not helped by "head office" going to bed in Copenhagen as I'm having breakfast in SA, while some eager client is submitting work in Chicago. This is called having different time zones. Fortunately most of the electronic exchanges happen without human actions.

And how many of you knew that Kazakh is where we get the word Cossack? A member of our song group mentioned that word this week in relation to a Russian song which the male voices are gearing up for. But of course the "Cossacks" from Tsarist times were about as 'Russian' as the British army's Nepalese Gurkha regiments are ... English.

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