So, dear friends, I have some exciting news. I have settled into a wonderful flat near the city center. I feel so happy to be closer to the university and to everything. My new place is a ten minute walk to the university, a fifteen or twenty minute walk to where I have my Russian classes, and about a 30 or 40 minute ride to the International Relations Department where I teach only two days a week. My landlady is really cute and nice, and she thinks it’s funny that I’ve never rented an apartment ever in my life and I’m doing it for the first time in Russia. She brought me at least 3 dozen apples as a housewarming gift, so I’ve been making applesauce and apple butter, which is DELICIOUS. And time consuming. But once I decide to do something then I have to do it, so. There you go.
The other things that are good about the flat is that it’s right by the main market in the city – think big indoor farmer’s market with all sorts of meat and fruit and spices, and stands outside where you can buy anything from slippers to shoes – and a really big renovated supermarket is opening across the street in a week. Not to mention the lack of bugs here. Although I did enjoy that both my dad and my brother referred to the buggies as my “new friends” it was put into perspective by my good friend who is currently living in the Dominican Republic: he said he woke up a few nights ago with a cockroach (not the baby Russian kind, the big kind) on his face. So none of that. I’m free!
I also gave my presentation today about American values, and it went really well! I think all of us were happy with how it went and with the turnout. We didn’t expect very many people to come because we only had a week to advertise it, but the room which serves as our American Center was full! Around 50 people showed up, mostly students but some adults too. I’m really looking forward to the next meeting, and talking to more students. People came up to talk to me afterwards, too, which is always fun. One guy told me, “That was legit!” which obviously made me happy. And as always I am happy to answer the random grammar questions that people have. All in all, a good Monday! I feel like I’m really starting to settle in and have a real little life. Speaking of which I have to prepare for my classes tomorrow, but let me leave you with some photos. I just figured out how to take panoramic pictures so let me have my fun.
Also: for all you creative chefs out there, please give me some recipe ideas! I need things that are not too difficult and do not have too many ingredients but are delicious and hopefully healthy. Soups, pasta, chicken recipes, anything. Please let me know.
can you see how delicious this is? I know the toast is a tiny bit burned but I am getting used to making it on the stove. Look at the little flecks of cinnamon and how delicious this looks! I am very proud of myself.
yummm. and I still have half the apples left.. I think for them it will just be apple sauce.
sorry I can’t add more photos now, my computer is being slow.