Monday, September 27, 2010

going home

For the last two weeks I was home in America. Being home was great not only because I was there to celebrate the marriage of my sister and her new husband Matt, but also because after 15 months away it was time to go home even if just for a week and a half. I had forgotten in the last year how great America is. The comforts of being home were great. I have this new habit of drinking coffee pored over ice and I really like it. But here in Armenia we don’t have ice and when I was done drinking the coffee I put the dirty cup in the dish-washer and again in Armenia we don’t have those. Washing machines, dryers, cable TV, high speed Internet, hot water, cars, restaurants with a variety of choices America has it all and now that I’m back in Armenia I miss it a lot.
But it’s important that I’m back for a few reasons which I’ll detail later. When I flew to America I was on nearly all empty planes but on the way back I was on completely full planes. I saw a giant, literally a giant, 7 feet tall writs the size of my head on my plane. And it was my first 747. Finally I got back to Armenia. I showed the teachers at my school the pictures from the wedding and brought them some candy which they loved. They all liked the dress a lot and were certain that Matt must be Armenian because he looks Armenian (he doesn’t look Armenian) but then they think everybody is Armenian.
Today I had breakfast with my new land lord and the medical advice she shared with me is the reason its important for me to be back. Remember I’m a healthy lifestyles teacher so I try to spread nutritional advice whenever I can. So this morning as I’m eating eggs and hot-dogs combined in a pan full of grease she says she had a family member who lived to be 86. He got that old because of his diet which consisted of lots of grease, butter, sour cream and milk none of which we were all told in fifth grade is healthy for you except for milk but still not a whole lot. Sure he lived to be old but he must have been a freak of nature because if you eat grease you’re not eating healthy. The reason this got brought up was because the pan that the eggs were cooked in had leftover grease in it and they wanted me to sop it up with bread I refused and they didn’t know why I wasn’t taking advantage of all those great vitamins and minerals not to mention how tasty it would have been…

Check out the photos I’ve posted from my experience in Armenia and also my two previous vacations by clicking the photos under this post.


India and Dubai

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

1 taxi, 2 taxi, 3 taxi's

I know its been a long time since the last time I wrote a blog entry. For the first few weeks I was busy but recently I’ve just been putting it off. The last time I wrote was before I left on my vacation to the Balkans and Greece, which was a lot of fun. I met my friend Danny along the way and together we met some pretty cool people and had just one major miss hap where we got on a train we thought was going to Skopje, Macedonia but was actually going to Sofia, Bulgaria. We didn’t end up in Bulgaria just one stop down the track with two suitcases and a ton of food we bought for the long ride which we then had to lug back to the town before catching a bus and finally going on to Skopje.
When I got back to Armenia my friend Ian who I met when I studied in DC came to visit. He stayed for nearly two weeks and in that time we went from the north of the country to the south seeing some great sites along the way. We even got to go to a wedding between a former volunteer and his new Armenian wife. Ian got food poisoning from a beer filled with dead bugs but those bugs didn’t show up until the last sip and then you know the damage wass already done.
After Ian left I packed up my old apartment and moved to a new house on the other side of town. I now rent the bottom floor of a house while my land lord lives above. She has three sons but she keeps telling me she now has four because I am her son also. I always appreciate hearing people welcoming me into their lives like that. The other day her youngest son called her on the phone and she made me talk to him which was weird but she had a big smile on her face while I did it. She also has 8 chickens, 20 chicks, one cow, and six rabbits, which she said we will kill in November and eat during the winter. I hope I am not around for that. Especially the cow because I think she knows what’s in store for her and often she looks at me with a look in her eye that can only mean one thing: “save me”.
When I first moved to Artik over a year ago I came alone in one taxi with just my stuff. When I moved out of my host family’s house back in December I went to my new house making two taxi trips and when I came to the house where I live now it took three taxi trips. I’ve accumulated a lot of things in one year. But Friday I leave to go home for my sisters wedding and with two suitcases in hand I will bring back many of the things I have bought to remind me of Armenia as well as many gifts people have asked me to bring to my sister and her fiancĂ©e Matt for their wedding. Of course these people have never met any member of my family so it means a lot to me that they want to share with them what they have.

While I’m home I hope to upload lots of pictures to my blog so check for those soon. And it would be great to meet up with you so give me a call!