|Bree holding Yan, Olea's 1 month old baby. |
We visited Olea, then went to Christina's house
and were fed lots of food both times.
My experience in Ukraine has been really eye opening. I’ve been here for almost a week now and I’m no where near used to the scenery, people, or the food. The whole atmosphere here is different. First of all, the scenery. I live in a village with Eric and Jessica and it’s kind of hard to describe, but I’ll try. One of the things that first surprised me was all of the stray dogs running around the streets. None of the dogs are on leashes or have collars and are all very skinny. The majority of houses are brick and have fences around them, either brick or wooden. The houses are also pretty close together. The roads are narrow and not clearly marked which gives partly to the crazy driving. My first taxi ride I thought we were about to run over 2 or 3 people just pulling out of the parking lot! Things are pretty dirty and unkempt with bottles and papers lining the sides of the streets. There’s a train station right outside of the village that the majority of people that live here walk to. There are also a lot of green house structures in the village; they don’t have the plastic on them because its winter, so they’re just the wooden bases.
The people, for the most part, have harsh appearances. I noticed they don’t smile very much, and I felt pretty silly smiling all of the time. The church family here is very sweet though, they have made me feel really welcomed. Last Sunday one of the ladies, Christina, pointed to chai (tea) and so I stayed in the room with her waiting for it to be ready. It was just me, her and her husband, Yuri. Neither of them can speak any English, but they still talked and talked and talked as if I knew what they were saying until I finally shrugged and made a desperate face like- I DON’T UNDERSTAND! They just laughed and continued to try to make me understand things by pointing to things like the chair and table and saying it in Russian. Next Sunday I’m going to bring my Russian dictionary.
Now the food! I’ve been fed kidney and caviar. I took one bite of the kidney and discreetly slid it under Jessy’s plate. I did the same thing with the caviar. The ladies here get very offended if you don’t eat their cooking! They do make very good compote, pies, and other dishes I don’t know the names of. It’s custom to bring something when you visit someone, typically cookies and chai.
Wish I had more pictures for you, but as usual, my batteries are dead. These pictures were taken with Eric's phone. Working on that though.