Doing the Right Thing
You needn’t have to have read this blog for long to realize that working and living in Azerbaijan can be rather frustrating at times. One of the reasons I’ve grappled onto is that it’s sometimes difficult to find instances where doing something has meant doing something right.
In America we say that “anything worth doing is worth doing well.” That hasn’t really been an attitude I’ve witnessed often here. Take, for example, the gas line construction from a few months back. That construction still isn’t what I would call finished. While some folks around here have told me that it’s all fixed up, the streets under which the gas line lies are still unpaved, half of the road left useless because instead of doing the job correctly, whoever was involved decided that fixing the road correctly wasn’t a priority. Instead, filling in the gaping ditch could be done just by pouring in dirt and sand and letting the road basically wash away from wind and rain. I doubt I’ll see the main avenue in Lənkəran return to its smooth-paved state. This also applies to a lot of other projects. Waaay back, there was this fix I did in the school. And we probably shouldn’t delve into the way most teachers conduct their lessons in schools.
This post was inspired by my having to put together the desk in my apartment. It had been here before, when Hiba lived here. After she moved out, the landlord, Samir, an otherwise awesome guy, took the desk and deposited at his own home. Upon learning that that was not the right thing to do, he brought back the desk. I took up putting it back together for fear of watching him doing it himself. Putting that desk back together, basically four large pieces, was nothing more than putting a bunch of screws in. Yet, the marks and rips out of the wood were telling. Whoever took apart and put this desk together last didn’t want to do a good job. Instead, while the overall condition of the desk was still good, there are places where it is obvious that instead of actually taking out the screws, the desk was just sort of ripped apart, with large craters of wood bursting out. Many of the screws were in the wrong places, and extra holes exist where there probably should be any. I’m glad I put it together again myself because I was able to put screws and things back where they belong, and I took the time to do it right.
Often, around here, it seems that there are very few things people really take the necessary time to do right. Just from superficial observations, I think it probably happens with the car washes and polishing shiny black shoes. Yet many of the bigger projects that more directly relate to a higher standard of living and improved comforts don’t get nearly the attention they deserve. It strikes me as a national case of attention-deficit disorder.