Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Ditching school

Tom and I had to duck out of our classes today. We are supposed to be having our kitchen cabinets built. So we had to come downtown to get money and get back home in time to meet the workers.

My class was going shopping. I thought it was interesting that Patrick said to me "do they think YOU have not shopped for four months?" I don't speak Russian fluently and I don't claim to. But, I can shop. I have a food vocabulary. Alexei likes to cook and so do I. So, when one of us makes something it is fun to guess what is in it! And so my food vocabulary grows when we share recipes and cook together. He teaches Lena and I both new things. It is great that he was a bachelor for so long!

On the bus this morning there was a woman who made Nathan give her his seat. She let us all know she was on her way to the hospital to have an operation. She was going from one side of town to the other. She made everyone close all the windows around her and when someone tried to open one as the bus filled up she would protest. Eventually the conductor stepped in and said she had 50 people to worry about and not just one. Then adamantly told that woman she should take a taxi if she wants comfort! Two younger women started joking about this lady wanting the comfort of a taxi for just 4 rubles... In April this conversation would have been lost on us. Today it was as clear as a bell! Where I come from this is called "loud talking". You say rude things about someone not to their face but just loud enough for them to hear it. It is done frequently here! These young ladies even looked her direction.

Poor Nathan; he was not even feeling well today. The last time he gave up his seat was to a nice little babushka who rewarded him with an apple. Today, no apple! I was praying he would not loose his breakfast on the hospital bound passenger! Finally someone opened up a window and we all breathed easier; much to her frustration.

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