It seems as the ever so strange and hard to believe day 90 creeps up on me I am at a loss for words that could be used to describe all the different things, besides that fact that I have things vanishing from time to time and I think that my 5 year old host brother is the reason behind it most times, like one day I had 365 som missing from my wallet. The reason I know this money was missing was because I went to count my money for the day, and I had just counted my money in my wallet two days ago when I had finished using the at my favourite little Italianish Cafe in town that has internet. Also, I keep a spread-sheet of all my money coming in and out and all my shopping I do is at places where I will get a receipt in the end. That same day my wallet went missing out of my bed room, where I had left it on the night stand by my bed and then i left the room to go brush my teeth, like I do after I eat usually, and the only person left in my room was my 5 year old host brother, and when I asked he he said he didn’t know, which I think is a big fat lie. Luckily the next morning I got up early an asked my host brother that speaks English to help, and he told his mum and she went and looked and found it and I was tempted to tell them, when they asked me if everything was still in there, that I was missing almost 400 som.
Okay anyway that was my rant I had to get out of the way so we can talk about the more happier and pleasant things that have been going on, such as I made some new friends both foreigners and a local girl who is supposed to be my ‘interpreter, translator, and tour guide while I am in Bishkek’. All the foreigners are from the school and everything some are the students in my school group and some are from another group but we all get along and have a good time at one friend’s flat/apartment which is huge, and cost like 12k USD a month, but she can easily afford it because she is working as an accountant while she is here. The local girl’s name is Alyona, she is 19 and going to one of the local universities, she is from Russia but she has been in living in Kyrgyzstan since she was 4 years old. She is not just my interpreter but Joe and Josette whom are the other two American Rotary students in Bishkek.
I am/was finally getting a handle on my money when the wallet incident happened. I was managing to keep it under control so that I am not spending a couple hundred USD in one month. I have fully decided that once I get all my passport and things figured out and handed back to me from either the school or the consulate's office I am going to try and open two accounts with the same bank, one checking and one savings. The money from Rotary will be put in my savings and maybe the remainders that are left in my checking at the end of the month will also get transferred to savings, because I really need to save up my money the best I can here and things so I can get good things and have some money on hand as I go through the airports.
Last Friday I figured out that both the US & UK allow dual citizenship, so I am going to e-mail the British embassy to the US and see if I meet the criteria and if they will let my 7 years I spent almost 7 years ago count as the time frame of the 5 years that are required according to the Home Office. I need to look at this test tat they want one to take also from www.lifeintheuktest.gov.uk, after that or even before that I should try and contact my uncle whom is an International lawyer in the south. I am hoping they will accept it because than that would help me with my dream and hopes of going to university in the UK, so far the best rate I have found was the University of Wales – Newport which only costs 8,280.00 GBP = 13,138.64 USD for foreigners, and I have found some airfare rates to Cardiff, which is the closest airport they say, that are as low as like 750 USD for like 3 connections. I even have one of me mates in the UK helping me and giving everything a second pare of eyes look over.
This Tuesday I went to my first Rotary meeting in the almost three months that I have been in Kyrgyzstan. It is at this famous American hotel called the Hayat Regency Hotel (sp?). They have it in this fairly nice room and they have a meal too, we had a local style fresh salad but it also had lettuce, which is not common in the fresh salads here. A fresh salad is normally just wedge sliced tomatoes and cucumbers and fresh onion rings (the normal type not the battered and fried type) all with just a tiny bit of salt to get the vegetables to release their juices a little I think. After that we had a nice like I think strip steak with like a brandy based barbecue sauce with mashed potatoes and a few pieces of steamed cauliflower. I actually did eat the steak-- which the people who know me know that I absolutely hate steak because I don’t like foods where I am spending a long time chewing a small piece so I can swallow it, but this was actually really good. The guest speaker was from a mining company that is trying to get a mine set up in one of the villages, the mine would produce a gold and copper composite mix that would be exported to China or Germany or maybe Australia. I just can’t really remember for the life of me.
Also, at the meeting Joe, Josette and I met a former Rotary student who was a rotary student 10 years ago to Germany. He is in one of the outer-laying villages with the Peace Corps. We actually all had lunch together at this local Mexican place called the Mexican Cantina, and we all agreed that it was really good and could believe that the beef and chicken where real beef and chicken not like ‘mystery meet’, like is found occasionally throughout the country. He comes in to town just about once a month or so, he is still in town all week but he will be busy finishing up some things that he has to get down before going back to the village. He told us that he is going to try and shout us some e-mails because people have been asking about Rotary Youth Exchanges and things. He is coming back in town for like the 2nd and/or 3rd week(s) in December. After, we all ate and tried to do math to figure out who got what out of the change, we went to this Turkish Supermarket called Beta Stores—I actually have their discount card that cost me only 50 som and gets me a 3% discount on my total—it is a really nice store on the bottom floor then it has 4 more 3 more floors. The 2nd floor has some phones, jewellery, souvenir and clothing stores as well as a barber, the 3rd floor is purely clothing they even have a “The North Face” store, 4th floor is just furniture, a children's play area as well as the toilets that cost 5 som to use. Anyway, we went straight to the third floor because Joe’s host mom wants him to get boots and we all just played about and found some awesome looking shoes, even a pair that had like a bunch of tiny white dots with small black spaces in-between and I did the pick up and go in a circle with it in a friends face thing. Joe complained and didn’t get any shoes so IDK his and Josette’s fate because Joe’s host mom has called Joestte’s host mom to tell Josette about Joe needing shoes.
On a side note that is completely unrelated, which that's just how I am, I decided to wear plastic bags over my shoes to walk to school and found something really good out that if you do that use the high quality super market store bags that we have here and not the ones you get from the bazaars because both shoes where wet by the time i reached school but I had water and slush in the bag from the bazaar and my shoes was completely soaked through to my sock, and my other shoe was only a little damp all over not enough to be felt by my feet through my two pairs of socks. Furthermore I almost completely wiped out on the stairs to the underground areas to cross the streets easily because of the bazaar bag, oh the bazaar bag was like one you might expect to get from a Chinese take out place, a fairly thing and clearish bag that had the yellow smile face saying thank you for shopping. Of course I did get a lot of strange looks from everybody but I felt quite accomplished, because on Tuesday it was raining and because I have to walk town hill and the water from the streets runs on to the side walks so imagine like literally an ankle deep river flowing down the side walks I ran through that so I wouldn’t have to slowly walk through it. I was really glad that I wear my Under Armour thermal pants underneath my Flanner lined Old Navy Khakis, which where soaked on both legs all around from food to knee.
The building I have class in doesn't have a central heating unit so we use two heaters, one slow and pathetic one that the teacher brought from home, and then she has a much better one that can easily be bought for like 25 USD in the bazaar, but I’m not going to buy it since we need it to stand up and shout heat and this things sits on the floor and only shouts a small bit upward and then forward and also I wont use it but on school days. Also, if I get two cold I can wait an hour or so till our ‘rest time’ which is a 30ish more or less sometimes break period where we can get some food and stuff, I actually went and bought my school group, sugar cubes, Nescafe Classic Instant Coffee and some Lipton tea, and the teacher brought an okayish kettle. I say okayish because the seal near the water gauge is not very good anymore and if you leave water sitting in it for a period of time it starts to drip, she put some sort of plastic thingy with a lip and I have to empty it every morning when I get to school and get new water in the kettle and have either a tea or coffee.
Thursday we had our own family Thanks Giving things with out host families, and then Friday was our Rotary Thanks Giving things with all of our host families getting together for it and all meet each other. We were hoping to be able to have Dinara with us but she was still under the weather because with the weather constantly changing in Kyrgyzstan and the climate changes are killing and she has bronchitis from the weather because in her other home outside of Dubai it is still Summer and the warm part of fall, while in Kyrgyzstan we are in the cold, damn cold and super damn cold and wet season, because if it rains in the morning and through the day by evening it is becoming snowing and decides to snow for the day and might continue for a day or so. We all had a good time, and had roast duck and things. Everybody’s family was there except mine.
The day after when I had breakfast I got yelled at by my host mom, and she asked why I sat at a cafe yesterday—she knew why but I don’t think she liked that I wasn’t at home. I tried to invite her the night before because I thought she has been asked on Wednesday when Josette’s mom called her. Then she went on to say that I don’t talk much and that I am not like Austin, and she wants me to be like Austin—Austin was the boy from my Rotary district who was with them maybe two or three years ago—she was saying that Austin would constantly buy things for them like bread and vegetables. I was really tempted to tell her “WELL I AM NOT AUSTIN! I DON’T HAVE A JOB YET! I DON’T HAVE MUCH MONEY WITH YOUR ‘LITTLE BABY KANATA’ IS STEALING MONEY FROM MY WALLET! ALSO, I NEED INTERNET AND YOU DON’T HAVE IT AT HOME AND THAT COSTS ME OVER 100 SOM A MONTH!” I am still tempted to tell her that. Furthermore I have cleared all of my things our of the room they are all packed up into my suitcases, and since I don’t have a second host family I am tempted to grab my stuff and just go and take a bus into town and try and stay in a Rotarian’s house for a while until I can be placed with a new family.
This post seems to be getting longer than I though it was going to get but i guess it is because so many new things have been happening as my Russian improves, I even have it worked out that starting in maybe January I will start taking Turkish along with my Russian I just have to find a place that teaches it maybe my school depending on how much they want. This Turkish could help my even just later this year when I might be going to Turkey for a week for the District Conference since this district here is based out of turkey. I think I shall now start this inspirational quote as the last line of my blogs as well as maybe a funny note or just something I think is fantastic.
So here is the first quote comes from Gandhi and it is something that I think many people in there life should follow and then they could go to sleep at night or lay awake thinking or dreaming of how this can and will change their life.
that you wish
to see in
Btw, my official day 90 was on Thursday 24 November, because I am not sure when I am going to get to post this because of all of the Thanks Giving things that we had on Thursday and Friday, and Friday is my normal day to stay in town and eat at Olive’s Cafe in town because they have a good bi-lingual menu and wait-staff as well as free Wi-Fi since I currently don’t have Wi-Fi with my first host family.