Thursday, May 24, 2007

Rainy Days

I wrote this post awhile ago but haven't had time to post it until now. So if I have time this might be a double edition. Oh, and if you don't like stream-of-conscious then i suggest you skip to the second part.
I keep my head down as I walk so that I can see the puddles. Although my shoes are soaked and squishy my jeans have started to dry. Running through the pouring rain for an Italian meal may not have been our best idea, but it certainly was one of our tastiest. Even now, two hours later back in Bobov Dol, still soaking wet and chilled to the core I think it was worth it.
jump over the river that has overtaken half the street
well at least I only got one foot wet, the other has stopped squishing finally and is now just damp
I can smell the cigarette of the man walking 15 meters in front of me. It's amazing how inescapable that smell is. Even in the open air it haunts you. As I start walking up the steps i notice two other girls that were on the bus with me. We seem to have all taken different routes to end up at the same steps.
so much like life
Our paths converge for an awkward second and we don't speak or look up. Then I am past one girl and the other passes me. The moment is over along with the awkward pause.
two blocks, turn left
up the stairs, up more stairs
turn left, one block, turn right
up the stairs, again
get the keys out...wait it's unlocked. she's home
Thank goodness today I'm not assaulted at the door. She yells from the kitchen and laughs. I respond in Bulgarian, there is no English spoken here,
"Yes, there was lots of rain today."
and think about my wet shoes and jeans. I hope she doesn't notice them. She doesn't.
"No, thank you I already ate dinner. I thought we talked about that yesterday."
"Oh, ok. No, I don't want dinner."
Any phrase that includes me not wanting food never seems to translate. After lots of pointing and motioning she gives up trying to feed me a second dinner.
My room always looks a mess. I clean it everyday and yet there is just too much stuff for one small room. More papers today, more handouts we were given, more notes, one less book lent to a friend, a pair of wet jeans, wet socks and shoes. Sort. Stack. Sort. Find space. Organize ...somehow.
Are those flees? I think I can feel them. I thought they were gone. Are there bites? No, only my imagination. Still I spray more to kill them if they are there or not.
My feet have finally dried and the chill is starting to fade from my legs. Don't itch the old flee bites, don't itch. Think about something else... don't itch. Ack! Stop itching.

Second Post: Now for Today
Today was Alphabet day. I know this makes no sense to anyone who is not Bulgarian so I'll do a little explaining. Cyril and Methodie were brothers and they invented the Cyrillic Alpahbet (notice only one of them is the namesake). Bulgarians are very proud of their alphabet because from what i understand it was one of the first in the area. So May 24th every year they celebrate these brothers that created the alphabet. Those are the basics.
Our school (and the other school in the town) put on an event with speaking and singing. So of course we all went. As the assistant mayor spoke I thought perhaps I was mistaken at what i heard. But no, oh no, I was not mistaken. then the mayor got up and I thought, perhaps everyone will maintain a quieter volume for this woman, the mayor, who is old enough to be their grandmother. But no, oh no. I have never sat through so much talking and disrespect in my whole life. Well I did stand through something worse when one of my students decided to jump out of the window of our classroom while I was teaching. Unfortunately we were only on the first floor. But I thought maybe, in a different setting where respect is commanded and expected these kids will demonstrate some amount of restrain. But no, not even a little. They were yelling to each other, getting up and down, talking incessantly at a normal level and when you combine 400 or 500 kids talking at a normal level all in one room it turns into a roar then add the speaker and sound system. Let's just say I ended up with a headache.
Tonight we'll be going to the teacher's celebration which should be much, much better.
Just as a side note:
As I type this I'm sitting next to a boy around 4 years old playing Miami Vice or whatever that video game is where you drive around in a car and run over people. He's the cutest kid. But now i can see exactly why they all acted as they did today.

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