June 2009


Hello out there, blog readers!  I just wanted to check in and apologize for not writing lately.  My schedule’s been increased, I’ve moved, Dad was here and we’ve had or are about to have 5 teachers leaving.  That’s a lot of goodbye parties, let me tell you.  Anyway, I am taking a break from my mountains of planning to do to fill you in on a little bit of what I have been up to.

I moved across the courtyard.  This was a generally sucky and sad task because A) I did it by myself, B) It was raining and C) I actually felt sad about leaving that craphole of an apartment because it meant the end of an era.

Dad came and we had a good time walking to the moon and back  around town and seeing the great sights of St. Petersburg.  We saw Swan Lake, went to the Circus (without any bears or tigers though, a bit of a disappointment), saw some amazingly b.b.o. (big beautiful and old) churches, ate some extremely delicious food, strolled through parks and learned some stuff in museums, but only the 1% I could translate.  We also saw two attempted robberies and a near drowning on the Neva.  Hopefully I will be able to post pictures soon, but the stupid internet at my new apartment is even MORE tempermental than at my first.

I haven’t had Russian in 3 weeks, and I believe I have lost some of what I knew, to put it mildly.  I start again tomorrow, so I have some major studying and homework doing to do.  Truthfully, I can’t wait.  Learning this language has been really good for me.

Cassie, Aaron and Elizabeth are all gone now, Fiona and Joel are leaving in a week, so this has been a somewhat challenging period to get through mentally and emotionally.  I prefer things to stay the same, you know, but the last ten days has really put a strain on my denial ability.  I still hear the missing teachers talking in the staff room and I still picture myself going back to the old apartment.  I do see this as part of the progression toward the end.  It’s always been coming but now I can mentally check certain steps off in my head.

I will be moving again in 8 or 9 days, and AGAIN about 10 days after that.  Hopefully I will be done then, settled in for the final push to the end.  Which, by the way, the end will rock my socks off, as far as I can tell.  Jane, Moscow, ferry cruise, Stockholm, Minneapolis (4FFFUM), and home.  Home has it’s own pull, I can’t wait to get back and see everyone and everything and eat again.

Ok.  That’s the update for now, back to the grind.

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Dad’s been here for a while now, and man have we been busy doing the tourist thing.  We’ve probably averaged about 6 miles of walking a day and we’ve been rained on at least 3 times.  Today was a very good day though, weather-wise and otherwise.  We went to the Church of the Saviour on the Spilt Blood, spent maybe 30 minutes in there, slack jawed and awe struck.  Then we took a stroll through the Mikhilovsky Garden, which really didn’t offer much for Dad and me, besides the 2 year old boy who ran laps around us while we rested on the steps of the Russian Museum.

The circus wasn’t exactly what I expected, it was a little short on the lions, tigers and bears, but heavy on the clowns and sea mammals.  I did laugh though, it was a good time.  After the circus we went to karovabar, which, translated, means ‘cow bar’.  There, I had the best meal I have had in about 8 months.  I knew it was a nice restaurant when I booked the table, and when I took the first bite of delicious steak, but when I had to get creative to use the bathroom faucet, the competition was over.  It’s how you know.

I hate the unrest I feel when my stuff is all packed up and split up in different places.  The feeling that I have right now is also caused by the fact that within a week I will have half as many friends, as many people are going home, AND that my dad is arriving today.  It’s a very confusing set of emotions.

Nothing else new to report.  I am going to go clean the kitchen now in preparation for the big MOVE OUT 2009, plan plan plan at school and teach.  THEN I will see DAD!

Kronstadt 153