Monday, December 20, 2010

Erin's Observations...Day 8

Well, here goes my crack at blogging…it’s my first attempt.  Day 8, I believe, and it has been a good day.  Just got off the videophone with my family back home.  They’re in good hands with my sister’s family…thanks, Sis.  Henry is at my mom’s, and is probably living high on the hog knowing my mom. 

We saw the sun today.  It felt good on our faces.  Alice got to the see the sun today, also.  The nurses in the baby room at the orphanage let us walk with Alice around the halls; it was probably one of the few times in her 14-month old life she has been out of the baby room.  There is one nurse in particular who has been quite kind.  She tries hard to communicate with us.  We are able to get a few words understood between the two of us in the spoken form.  The rest of the communication is on paper.  Emily and I think about what we want to ask the night before we visit, then I go to Google Translate and get the proper translation.  I write the translation down and that’s it.  Problem is that very few conversations naturally end without the person that you are speaking to not speaking something back.  At which point I kind of shrug my shoulders and the conversation is over.  But, at least I was able to get my question across.

I’ve been keeping a tally of things I wish I had brought with me.
·         A good English → Russian dictionary with phonetics,
·         A power converter for my electronics,
·         A few DVDs,
·         Peanut butter,
·         and black pepper (if I’ve seen it, I haven’t recognized it).

The people here are not much different than anywhere else.  They’re not especially kind, nor overly rude.  They mind their own business.  I did expect that more people would speak English since it is the international language of business, but not so.  This would probably be a little more enjoyable if we could speak the language.  As it is we feel a bit helpless, even trapped at times in the apartment. 

Our apartment, in the region, is quite nice.  Much better than what we had in the big city.  It reminds us of a Las Vegas lounge with all the levels in the flooring and the accents (not that either of us have ever been to Vegas).  It has plenty of room and pretty much all the amenities we could ask for minus a clothes dryer. 

I’ve tried to get some understanding of their sense of religion.  They have religion, everyone does, but to be fair, I haven’t ventured far enough out among the people to gain an understanding.  How much do they fear God?  Sex is a big seller here, even more than our malls in the U.S. (believe it or not).  I’d have to be covering my son’s eyes often when just driving in the car.  Not a surprise has been the abundance of alcohol made available.  One of the grocery stores we visited frequently, which was small – about six or seven aisles, had one of their aisles dedicated to just alcohol.  Our driver told us that drinking is entertainment for them.  After writing all this, I realize that, sadly, the U.S. mission field has just as much harvesting to be done as here.

Got to go, bye.


  1. I just typed you a nice long note, but it didn't post. :( Maybe I can share it with you another time,perhaps.

    Looking forward to the updates!

  2. Great to hear from your perspective Erin. On your list of things you wished you had brought I have to tell this story.

    We had a converter in country and it was great...until we overloaded it and it blew!(This was on day 2 of a two week trip.) And it took out the lights in our hotel-we thought the whole building. Praise the Lord only our room as we already had the crazy Americans label attached to us traveling with 4 kids and 2 speaking Russian and us not. Also, the translation book we had was the "First 100 words in Russian" kids book. It had pictures. We brought it for the kids, but it was more useful for us to communicate with people in the was how we got our lights back on after the converter overload. =]


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