Saturday, May 25, 2013

May 25, 2013

Spent one of my worst nights with a severe case of diarrhea, the first time this had happened in Bishkek. The rumbling started before I went to bed only to get increasingly louder and more painful until the trips to the bathroom started depriving me of sleep and causing my hemorrhoids to start bleeding.

When I fired up my laptop, I found a message from my brother-in-law telling my mom was in the emergency room complaining of a severe headache and shoulder pain. The hospital was about to do a scan to try and find the cause of the pain. We went back and forth a few times, but there was nothing much to be done but wait for the results of the scan. I asked James to keep me posted.

In spite of the discomfort I was in, I knew I wanted to be present for Forum’s last session for the school year as Jill would be presenting for the entire two-hour slot and she’s a great trainer. I couldn’t eat anything for breakfast and just packed a few pieces of chocolate in my bag to eat while listening to the presentation.

Only a handful of teachers were present as today was what the Kyrgyz call “last bell” or last day of classes and apparently it is also the day when high school graduates parade all over town with a red sash across their chest while celebrating in many different ways. Many of the teachers were required to be present at their schools when their students graduate.

Jill gave a very energetic presentation on interactive ways to engage students in the English classes and even provided a folder with all the handouts she’d used during the presentation. Elvira came in at some point to talk to Jill and didn’t even bother to say hello to me. I did remember she’d promised to invite me to her daughter’s kindergarten graduation today.

When the presentation was over, Asel, Gulnara, Willoughby and I tried to discuss what the agenda was for tomorrow when we’re scheduled to depart for Naryn. Asel must have been operating under the assumption that I could finance the hiring of a taxi to Naryn and back for 4,000 soms or about $100.00. She also thought that Willoughby had funds of her own to cover the cost of the transportation between the city of Naryn and the village where the training is due to take place.

I disavowed her of such notion immediately telling I had been very clear in indicating that the money I had requested from my PAA was only for my transportation since lodgings were being secured at Gulnara’s brother’s house. In fact, I didn’t even understand why Asel was joining us at the last minute since that now made it four people in need of a place to sleep.

Before we left, an announcement was made that Forum would sponsor a picnic after all but details were hazy. I had heard from Calvin that a fantastic ballet was performing at five today and urged Willoughby to go get tickets before they might be sold out. The remaining tickets cost 1000 soms, or around $25.00, and a couple were left on the mezzanine. We also purchased our respective tickets for the opera “La Traviata” being offered next Sunday.

We headed to the Orto Sai bazaar so Willoughby could buy some fresh pork chops which planned on cooking and taking with her on the trip to Naryn so she wouldn’t get sick with the food served in the village. We returned to her apartment complex and I had a bowl of solyanka soup and tea at a restaurant nearby to calm down my stomach before we headed back to the Opera Ballet Theater.

I had been able to check my email at Willoughby’s place and got another message from James telling me the cat scan on my mom’s had come out negative and they were preparing to go home with her. That was a relief.

We saw tons of teenagers, the guys dressed in suits and bow ties, and the women in their white blouse and black skirt uniform parading on foot or in cars all across the city all of them in a very gay mood.

The ballet in questions was way too long, over three hours including the speeches, and I had a difficult time sitting for such a long time when my hemorrhoids were playing a number on me. When more speeches started at the end of the last performance, I asked Willoughby if we could leave.

Once at home, I had a little bit more of the lentil soup I had cooked a couple of days ago and finally got to go to bed.

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