Journal, September 2, 1976 PM

Oh what a headache! I’ve been getting headaches daily or almost daily, always centered in the right front part of my head, for over a week now. I never remember having headaches so steadily before. Hypochondriac that I am, I’ve gone so far as to speculate (seriously) that it might be some kind of cyst or something caused by amoebas causing pressure & therefore the pain. I read in my Peace Corps medical info. About them finding growths in the brains of fatal amoeba cases, & have never gotten the fear of that completely out of my mind. I’m very sensitive about preserving my brain!

I don’t think that amoeba treatment has cured me, my stools still aren’t normal. I’m not certain it isn’t just a constant reinfection of bacteria or the little burp-inducing amoebas from the water here. Tonight I boiled 2 bottles of water for drinking, & I’m going to try to continue the practice. I want to get my system cleaned out before I leave this country! Also, I need to take better care of my health if I’m going to spend another year here in the tropics. I need to break some bad habits.

I tried my hand at estimating a Lorenz curve and Gini coefficient for the Department {Province} of Chaletenango today at work. I used 1971 census data, and they only had the land divided into production units rather than by ownership, but I did it anyway. Actually, according to an article I read, by John Booth, crossing property owners with parcel sizes gives a conservative estimate of land concentration, because it ignores renters, “colonos” {essentially serfs} and day laborers who tend to manage small lots under some tenure agreement other than ownership, but who depend on the land for their livelihood. The land exploitations, which were the unit I used (it being what was in the census) include “producers” in the categories of renters, “colonos” and similar arrangements, so it should give a more graphic demonstration of the concentration of land resources in the department {province}. I got a Gini coefficient of .7876, pretty high, but not at all surprising given what I already knew about the land tenure situation in this country.

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