Sunday, October 21, 2012
October 21, 2012
What a relaxing day I have had! I got to sleep in relatively late and then got together with Elvira, who found my apartment with no help from me, but from Google, and we worked on her proposal to the U.S. embassy to fund the printing of the Forum newsletter for everyone present at the CATEC conference in June. Elvira reiterated what I had read someplace else, that Bishkek has a central heating system that is turned on at some point in November, so that even when temperatures drop into the mid-30s now in October, there won’t be any heat until then. I do have the convenience of a wall unit offering both A/C and heat, but haven’t seen the need to turn it on yet.
Jennifer, my RELO, wrote to ask me to send her a brief report on the Columbus Day activity at the American Pilot School along with photos so she could use them in her report. I then got an invitation from her to be friends on Facebook, something that had been popping up on my page, but I really didn’t want to accede to. I think my political views are too extremely liberal to have my supervisor look at every post I make. I complied with her request and just hope for the best.
I took a delightful walk after lunch and just wandered around the neighborhood while making my way to the Osh Bazaar as I found out yesterday that all the salads I bought from the Korean ladies had gone bad in the fridge as I couldn’t eat them fast enough. That should teach me a lesson: stop buying so much produce at one time.
It was hard to believe the temperature was only in the mid-50s as it didn’t feel cold at all. The market was its usual crowded, noisy and vibrant place and I snapped photos while sampling the flat bread and buying a few staples.
Another discovery: there is an elegant bakery on Chuy Avenue, not three blocks from my house offering the most exquisite desserts and the nicest boxes to pack them in. I had already stopped at a Turkish one and had bought a sandwich and something that looked like a creamy dessert. I’ll have to try this one out next time around.
The couch surfers from Italy emailed to say they would be arriving around 10:30pm despite my clear instructions about my retiring to bed early. Their arrival will happen way past my usual bedtime.
I emailed the resource booklet and the additional pages to Bill, from Peace Corps, agreeing to have him look at the contents and make recommendations as to what would be worthwhile keeping or throwing out.
Michele and Franco called from the bus station and got a local person to engage a taxi for them. Since they didn’t have a cell phone with them, this person accompanied them all the way to my front door. I was impressed by this guy willingness to insure his two companions would have a place to spend the night. As I had suspected earlier on, the pair had not eaten dinner and being past 10:30, the shop across the street would have been closed by then.
I offered them the remaining pasta dish I had cooked, the leftover flat bread and my cabbage salad and pomegranate juice. They both ate as if they hadn’t had a decent meal in ages and did so in that noisy manner I so much dislike. For being from Italy, these guys didn’t not even pretend to eat as the Europeans I’ve observed do refusing even to use the knife set on the table to help scoop up their food.
When we turned to the bedding situation, Michele and I couldn’t figure out how either sofa would turn into a bed as there were no hinges anywhere to pull the bed out. We decided on the spot that one of them would sleep in the living room sofa and the other in the spare bedroom. I was glad they had brought sleeping bags with them for it was getting cold inside the apartment and I only have one for moi.
Franco got into the bathroom to take a shower and stayed there forever and a day as he probably had layers and layers of dust and grime to remove from his body. I informed both of them of the fact that there is only one key to the apartment and thus they needed to leave when I did so. They are here trying to arrange for a visa so as to continue traveling into China. The Chinese embassy happens to be right behind my apartment complex. I told them we’d meet back at my place after five in the afternoon.