My deep apologies (seriously) for not writing sooner, I haven’t given up on this blog! We just haven’t had sufficiently fast, or even slow internet, but we finally have the needed docs from our landlord to move forward with a wifi of sorts. What does that mean? The pics are coming and I have many to share! However, the spastic state of our current internet means it has taken me a week to put this post together, sentence by sentence, and I (unfortunately) do not have the patience or the will power to watch the photos upload for 30 minutes, only to freeze and shutdown- NOOOOO!
Well, enough with the drama, you get the picture and the photos are on their way! :)
In other news, we hit our one month anniversary of living life here in this country. What a whirlwind (or better yet- what a hurricane) of information and newness! We have both had our fair share of tears and happy dances, and thankfully we’re alternating emotions, so we aren’t both in tears at the same time! :) But most days something great happens (actually quite small but seemingly huge in the moment) and we both start doing happy dances celebrating these minor accomplishments.
Here are a few ways I feel like I’m slowly becoming a local (emphasis on “slooooowly”)…
– on Saturday one of my new friends came over and taught me how to make somsa (look these up- they’re dangerously good!)
– in preparation for this event, I went bazaar shopping and one item I’m most excited about is a rolling pin that is more than half my height (and was less than $2)! I’m talking 3 feet long– bread making is no joking matter.
– bargaining for taxi rides! Here the typical taxi fare is between $.80 and $2.50, but there’s a great bargaining game to be had before you enter the vehicle. Lately, I’ve found myself bargaining over a measly $.10, where the taxi driver is grunting and pretending to be disappointed and I’m gasping and pretending to be blown away by the outrageous price. Humor :)
– I’m beginning to love bazaar shopping- here grocery shopping is a daily occurrence and locals even have a saying that all of life (the love and tears) and the development of friendships happens at the bazaar.
Other exciting things I’m learning and discovering (aside from crazy amounts of language and culture)…
– my fitness class is like a dream come true. I laugh so hard with these ladies and do the craziest moves to the silliest music, but the result has been sweet friendships and a whole class of ladies that is looking out for me.
– my favorite tutor so far is from my fitness class!
– I’m discovering that the “godfather” voice I thought was specific to our apartment manager, is actually quite the rage here. The other day is saw a 10 year old boy greet an older man (a friend of his) in this godfather-esque voice, and the return greeting from the man was in this same voice. WHAT?!
– I’m learning how to grow herbs from seeds- though I’m not sure I’m succeeding.
– I learned how to bargain for meat and ask for it to be ground (which may seem insignificant, but when you have huge burly men on the other end of the counter yelling at you in Russian to hurry up and make up your mind, it can be kind of daunting. So I’m learning how to yell back like all the other customers, and sometimes add a little snarl if they’re being extra brutal).
– We’re slowly getting the hang of how to greet locals– you must include at least these core questions, and it would be kind to add at least 2 or 3 more, and the greater feat is to string these together so fast that they fit into a five second hug– How are you? How’s it going? How’s your week? Are you well? How’s your health? How’s work? How’s your family? *and breathe* Usually we can only fit in 2 greetings by the time they’ve finished asking and answering! Wowza
– A smile goes a long way here to soften hearts and break through language barriers.
Here’s to hoping that the next post will be all photos!