Friday, May 30, 2008

Things I Will Miss and Do MIss

Sometimes I think I spend too much time pointing out different things as negative things when they aren't. So... I've realized, there will actually be some things (other than Ellie) that I will miss from this country. Just so I'll remember that when I'm home, I wanted to record them:

  1. Olives and pickles at breakfast. Ok, so I know this is just flat out crazy, but I have grown to LOVE having olives and pickles with my breakfast. One day they didn't have any and I was distraught. It appears this culture has less "sweeties" than the American culture. They eat more meats, cheese, pickles, olives, veggies and fresh fruits. They also walk a LOT more than we Americans which is why there don't appear to be nearly as many overweight people here.
  2. Early morning time. Because of the time change, I always wake up long before Kevin and Josh. I get to see the sunrise, usually, read my email, post on the blog, spend time in prayer and have some quiet time before I start my day. At home, there is always SO MUCH to do that I never have any quiet time. This has been a blessing.
  3. Vladimir, our driver. Neither of us speak the same language but I just like him. He's like a grandfather figure. I want to ask Aliya if she'll take a picture of all of us. He grumbles when he's pulled over for speeding (it's happened 4 or 5 times so far) and he gripes in traffic and he points out all the sights in Russian. He's just great.
  4. The shower at the Silk Road Lodge. I should take a photo of it as I can't describe it, but I love having a handheld shower head to wash with. I think I'll investigate options at home to add this to my shower.
  5. The mountains and the drive to Tokmok. While I don't particularly care for the traffic or diesel fumes, I love when we get out of Bishkek proper and hit the countryside area. I love seeing the mountains and the farm lands and the animals. It's so beautiful.
  6. Inexpensive batteries. Yes, another crazy one, but batteries at home are RIDICULOUS. We pay $3.06 USD for 4 turbo duracell batteries here. They last forever.

What I cannot wait to have again:

  1. ICE. Everything here is tepid. I really would love some ice cream or ice cubes or something!!
  2. Real air conditioning. No one uses air in their cars here -- except Vladimir (another reason I like him a lot). The hotel room does has a wall type unit that cools our bedroom really well, but doesn't really cool both the bedroom and sitting area. After walking everywhere in the heat, A/C is a commodity. I feel really sorry for those who are travelling here in July and August (read "me" on return trip) as it should be sweltering.
  3. Southern style cooking. Don't read lard based cooking or anything, but I'd like a casserole or some spaghetti (that tastes right) or some bacon and eggs -- real food.
  4. English spoken everywhere. We have managed to communicate, don't get me wrong, but it has been challenging. I'm ABSOLUTELY learning a few phrases before I return. Common courtesy phrases like please, thank you, excuse me, hello, goodbye and some basic phrases like how much, where is, do you speak English and I don't speak Russian would be helpful.
  5. My pets. I really miss by kitties and doggies. I know they are being well cared for by Kevin's mom. In fact, we have accused her of spoiling them and told her if she does they have to go home with her. :-)
  6. My curling iron. We brought an adapter, but also need a converter for things like the curling iron that don't have it built in. I don't use it so much to curl as to straighten. I feel like curly-head Shirley Temple when I've been out in this heat. I'm managing without it, but would have like to have had it to use.
  7. Charmin. The TP here is a bit rough. Gets the job done, but truly, it's more like a cheap brand of paper towel than TP.

So, there you have it. Things I'll miss and things I do miss.


Pamela said...

I'm crackin' up, Maria! Mostly, because I'm having a flash back to when I was in Aktobe, Kaz two years ago with my sister. Summers are not easy in Central Asia...very hot, and all of the things that come with hot and no air conditioning.

Otherwise, I so appreciate this post. It is preparing me for Tulla Belle's arrival and I'm so grateful for your honesty.

Blessings to you and your family!


Monica said...

Very interesting! I love reading the list of things you'll miss and NOT miss. My hair curls like that too in any bit of humidity. Just our luck though we'll probably travel in the dead of winter. We'd be lucky anyway if we get to travel even that soon.

thx for sharing you're journey with us.... you give us all hope!

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