Monday, September 23, 2013

Tima Attack

Hello all,

Once again on the iPad. Drained my battery (and had a minor heart attack that the plug was not going to fit into my adaptor until I punched out a plastic piece) looking at pictures with my host mother, Leanne. She showed me lots from a thumb drive and I showed her family ones I had uploaded from old albums for my parents' 30th anniversary this summer. We had a good time and conversation wandered endlessly. We started talking about technology, she claims Ukraine is 10 years behind the US...although some houses here still do not have running water and thus no indoor plumbing. So I got to share my own story for the day...

In Which I Have My First Blush
 Yay! Cultural differences! Well, to be very honest, one can get stuck in a bathroom in America - but I can almost guarantee that the bathroom would not double as a kitchen as well. It was my second trip in for the day, having washed up dishes from tea break. I had noticed that the door did not close properly - no large hardship as our meeting room is 2 rooms away. However, as I entered the room, the door shut smoothly. When I was ready to leave, I attempted to turn the handle...without any results! Left, right, shimmying up, down, sideways...I tried it all. Now in a state of moderate disbelief, I whimpered "dopomojheet?" (Transliteration of 'help!' in Ukrainian...) to absolutely no effect. Mind racing, I came to the realization, that yes, this was going to end in embarrassment. Now, dont't get me wrong, I know it is inevitable, and sure to happen more times that I will care to admit - but I was really hoping I could get through at least a full day of classes! Clearly, this was not to be. So, in graduating modulation, I began to say one of my clustermate's name... "Curly?...CUrly...CURLY!?!"

Now, it occurred to me that perhaps this was only going together worse before better. Bad enough to be stuck, worse to not be able to fix it myself, but having to holler at full-volume was not making this any easier on my psyche...But I steeled myself and started yelling help inUkrainian. Because, damn it, if I have to go, I am going big! Well, that brought not only the lone male (Hugo) of my clustermate's scurrying, but out instructor as well. Just to really drive the embarrassment factor higher, the door clicked open with the tiniest of gestures on the part of my instructor....leaving him bemused and me redder. Mustering a thank you, I flamed my way back into the room, to the giggles of my clustermates. Had it not been me, I know I would have been immensely amused as well, and so I am glad they all have a good sense of humor. Hugo also was kind enough to mention he had fallen into the same trap earlier, so I was somewhat mollified. However, Leanne laughed uproariously when I communicated the story in the middle of cleaning up dishes - only to erupt once more into a fit of giggles several minutes later. So I am proving myself to be entertaining, if nothing else!

Signing Off...
At any rate, it was a rather long day with a full 3 hours of language and then several technical sessions. While it would be easy to be overwhelmed, I feel that SIT prepared me well - annnnnd, Tima, the family cat just jumped up on my bed and scared the crap out of me...I have been in my room for over 2 hrs - with nary a peep from him. I think he saught refuge from the overly enthusiastic attention from the children and was apparently hiding under my bed. He has now been removed and I will finish by saying that I will remember to keep positive and have faith that hundreds of volunteers have come before me and certainly many will come after with success....

Hope all is well,


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