Friday, October 3, 2008

Ambassador Llorens Likes Renewable Enegy (and me)

The conference here in Copán Ruinas has been really good. The presentations have been only partially relevant to our work, but the networking has been fantastic. I have met people from USAID, the Consulate's office, and the US embassy. I even got to meet the new US Ambassador to Honduras, Hugo Llorens! He spoke to the group and mentioned that his recent meeting with the president of Honduras. He said that both he and the president were interested in promoting alternative energy in Honduras and mentioned plans to install a commercial wind farm.

So at the next break I walked up to him and introduced myself. I gave him my 20 second talk: who I am, where I'm from, and that we're doing village-level electricity projects using renewable energy and that we're looking for financial partners and other help.

He enthusiastically gave me the name and cell number of a man he knows interested in investing in renewable energy projects here. He said I could tell the man that Ambassador Llorens told me to contact him! Then he said, after you talk to this guy, come see me in Tegucigalpa! Cool. The whole conversation took about one minute.

That conversation alone was worth the plane fare. But I also met a great missionary couple working here. They are about my age and have two girls near the ages of my boys. He is an engineer and is largely doing agricultural work in the area. He has built a dam to collect water for irrigation purposes and would like to install a hydro generator to provide electricity for the people in the area. And on top of that, he has built his own biodiesel processor from a kit and has been making batches from palm oil! We may try to do a prototype system together or something.

You know, for a person that's generally an introvert, I am thriving on making these connections. I really love it. It's almost a game to see how many folks I can meet. I can only attribute this to being married to The M for 15 years now. The scriptures are correct (imagine!) when they say that the two shall become one. The M and I have each been migrating toward the personality-middle-ground for years. She is becoming more introverted, or at least doesn't hate being alone anymore, and I have become a networking schmoozer. Miracles never cease.


Anonymous said...

I miss you honey! I enjoy reading your thoughts while you are away. Keep posting on the road. It makes me feel like we are closer (in proximity) than we are. :)

The M

Leslie said...

im wondering if the special connection with the ambassador was your brilliant intellect OR, alteratively, the fact that you are both bald :) if the latter is the case, you should thank the M for having you shave..hey it just occured to me..i can totally look at men with hair too, b/c i could always make mine shave his head too..if he si out there...well, anyway, thanks for the EUREKA moment..or was it the vicodin? PS. your wife is AMAZING!!!!!!

Leslie said...

oh, ps i just noticed you spelled energy wrong :)

Sharon said...

Hi. I just stumbled on your blog, and am interested in the comments you made about the conference in Copan last year. I am a PhD student working with projecthonduras - you may recall I presented at the conference. I would love to know if anything came of the contact you made through the ambassador, or others. I can be contacted by email- s.mclennan (at)
Sharon McLennan