Friday, December 10, 2010

A bit of this, a bit of that

Tonight I was walking home from the perekrestok (a grocery store chain) and I suddenly had this flashback to my first night in Russia, when I got lost walking this very route, wandered around knocking on random apartment building doors, cried (nay, sobbed) in public, and contemplated sleeping on a park bench next to a statue of Comrade Lenin before I finally made it back to 20/15 Sherbakova. This struck me as both embarassing and hilarious. Now I feel confident that you could blindfold me and I could still find my way back home. And that's another thing. Home.

I've subconsciously started thinking of my flat as home. After walking up five flights of stairs after a long day at work, my first thought is Ahh, it's good to be home. I hang up my coat and winter stuff in the hallway, drop off my book bag in my room, change out of my work clothes into pyjamas, then make my way into the kitchen to cook dinner and enjoy a cup of tea (creamy rooibos, if you're wondering. And how the hell do you pronounce "rooibos" anyway? It's like the "Bysshe" in Percy Bysshe Shelley. Something I've always wondered. Ladna/ANYWAYS)

It just made me think about how every new thing in life seems, at the time, to be so scary and different and AWFUL, and then, gradually, you start to get so used to it that next thing you know, you're walking around like you own the place. Speaking of owning the place, I found out today that my flat is actually NOT owned by Language Link, but rather rented from some guy named Genghis (yes, as in Khan) who lives in the Czech Republic and apparently has a really bad temper. Let's hope he stays there.

Other things on my mind/a bit of a recap:

- It's almost Rhea's birthday. Tomorrow we're going out for sushi at Tanuki, a popular sushi chain restaurant here. I'm so excited, I love sushi and I love Rhea so it should be an amazing night :)

- I just finished teaching a 30-hour conversational course the other day, and one of the women brought me a present! I was so touched. It's a wool scarf, done in a pattern called "Russian Gold", very pretty...I would post a pic of it here but...

- I'm starting to feel like I shouldn't own ANYTHING expensive. For some reason, my new camera (a graduation gift from my parents!) just won't turn on! I took a picture the other night, and everything was fine, and then the next day I went to use it and it wouldn't work. Tried plugging it in and charging it. Nada. What is going on??? First my ipod. Then my computer. Now my camera??? I think I'll try and take it to an electronic store and see if they can fix it, because there's no reason for it not to work. I've been thinking about the perks in getting an e-book of some sort, but based on my luck with technology, I think I should just content myself with the crappy paperback thrillers I found at the school. Sorry if I sound bitter and angry, but, well, I AM bitter and angry.

- Taught my first class of kids today. It's a good thing kids don't judge. At least, the really little ones don't. Should make singing dorky songs about Mrs. Star, Mr. Star, and Suzy, Stella, and Simon Star a little easier.* On a more positive note, the kids are absolutely adorable. I totally plan on making my own kids take foreign language lessons, it's just too cute.

- I'm recently ADDICTED to baked pumpkin. It's seriously so delicious. I sprinkle a bit of cinnamon on top like this. The fact that my oven has no temperature gauge just adds to the fun.

- Oh, aaaaaaaaaaand...we're going to have hot water in our flat SOON! Well, hopefully. An electrician came yesterday morning (naturally, bright and early on the one weekday I can sleep in) and spent hours trying to fix our water heater, only to determine that its super old and is basically falling apart. So we need a new one. When this is going to happen, I'm not too sure. But its progress. And in Russia, that's always appreciated.

- Another thing that's appreciated? Today it was +2. Oh yeah.


*The family in the kids' English textbook is actually eerily similar to my own family. Not only do we have the exact same last name, there are two sisters and one brother. Creepy. However, I am eternally grateful that my parents weren't as obnoxious when it came to naming us as the fictional Mr. and Mrs. Star were. I hate it when all the names alliterate.

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