Friday, August 19, 2005

work, work, work

aaaaah! Learning the ABV's is hard work. We have had to learn the sound, letter and how to write the letter in cursive. For three months we have been printing. And no one cared if we could recite the Alphabet... but now we are in school and we have to get it done. Tom can do it to the tune of Rudolph the Red nose Reindeer. Mine is more of a rap song... We are also studying Russian intonation. There is a difference between the way Americans speak and the way Russians speak. Today when I answered my cell phone in Russian... Alexei hung up on me! He called back and had to ask if it was me! Erin told me that my voice sounds different when I answer in Russian... I think that will make my teacher happy!

We went for our third HIV test since last August. Test results cannot be more than 6 months old. So we had the test done again here. The hemotologist was very efficient. Spencer has veins that are hard to find... in America that is. The Russian gal found them on the first try. I think they have a few things to teach Americans! We saw excellent hygiene practices and brand new packages of needles opened in front of us. It was amazing.

The other day I was very tired on the tram-vi and I wanted to sit down so I asked this woman if I could sit beside her. She got up and let me in. The conductor saw the whole thing and when he came over to ask me for my ticket he said "and you, Princess?" I love Russian humor! Our teacher says that when you get the jokes you have moved to another level of understanding! Our friends Lena and Alexei taught me how to make jam yesterday. After we finished we ate dinner and had watermelon. Alexei showed me that he breaks the slice in half and uses each half to pick the seeds from the other. Lena says she just eats them! In half Russian and half English I told them that when I was little I was afraid to eat the seeds because I thought a watermelon would grow in my stomach. Alexei laughed so hard! Then he translated the part that I said in English to Lena. She was so suprised that he understood me! He has come so far in three months just like we have!!!!

It is so hot here that there are no air conditioners or fans to be found in the entire city!!!! We feel like we are back in Kansas or possibly Texas take your pick!

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