Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Welcome to My World

Hi Everyone!!!

I finally posted a blog =) YAY!!! Many thanks to Zhenitchka.

So today marks my 7th day in Russia, not that I should count the first since most of it was spent on a plane. Either way, tomorrow will be one week. Sad to say, my Russian is not any better. I would say that my comprehension has improved but I can not answer back in full sentences. I was starting to get very frustrated with this when at my apartment with Nina (my babushka/host mom).

She often greets me at the door with a game of 20 questions- not at all fun after hiking home from a crowded bus and I am dripping sweat and starving. When I take a deep breath and say, "Ya ni poniyemau" she only raises her volume which after three times sounds like she's yelling. I get the final say, luckily, once I muster up a very confused face. She then laughs and walks away.

She's a very kind lady and eager to please me which I am very blessed and flattered by. She is always asking me what I want to eat, even though I know that I know the correct vocabulary words for the food but somehow, I don't get them. I'm totally not complaining! I am amused but also wondering why she bothers to ask, maybe out of politeness- HAHAH. Tak in attempt to remedy the situation, I have learned to say, "whatever you are cooking is fine".

Nina is hilarious though. She is a great cook. I have begun the daunting task of trying to teach a Russian babushka that Americans (more specifically, me) don't eat raw vegetables for breakfast. For the sake of compromise, I will eat ramen noodles (called macaroni) and hot dog weiners (sahshiski) even though I am not a fan. But for some reason I can not stomach raw cucumbers, tomatoes or squash first thing in the morning. Plus, it's LITERALLY the very first thing. I open my eyes, make up my bed and Nina opens the door saying "Good morning- go eat" (in Russian, of course). I have tried and tried to ask her to give me some time to wash my face, etc- to no avail.

Oh well. Life in Russia is good. Life in Russia is comical. My life often plays out like a sitcom (even in the US) but that's what makes it a good life =)

Back on subject- learning Russian. Today in Russian class, I did very well. I even went to the magazeen (store) to purchase water and the kinshgi magazeen (bookstore) to purchase a very cool DK Russian/English Photo Dictionary. It was $30- yikes! But I figure it would be more in the States unless I e-bayed it. So I purpose to study one page every day. Stay tuned!

Other than that happy note, teaching orientation drags on... Today we had a mixer with some of the students we'll have in the fall. It was really cool to meet my Russian peers and other adults. They are all very eager to hang out with us outside the AH and be our friends. This will be fun- although I imagine we'll speak primarily in English =)

One more funny Nina story. I got sting by a bee on my right eye. Yes, the surgically repaired one. I knew it was a bee because I was not yet fully asleep and I smashed it with my hand. It hurt too but I fell asleep. To my horror, I awoke in the morning to my Quasi-moto image in mirror. It was bad. (Michele, I know you'll laugh at this). So then I try to tell Nina what happen because of course, she asked. I told her it was a chela (bee). She said no, it's because I take cold showers everyday! GO FIGURE. Hilarious! When I told her I saw the bee, she did not believe me and continue to reprimand me for the daily cold showers.

So that's all for now.

Until next time, I continue my quest to become Russian- to become IRINA (my Russian name).


Lacey said...

It sounds amazing! Keep me posted on EVERYTHING!!

whatever said...

Great stories Erin. I can totally imagine your adventures. I can't wait to hear more!!!
Love ya