I am feeling a bit overwhelmed by my day here in Yerevan. For one thing, I wish that we were staying in Armenia longer. There is a lot to see and learn here. For someplace that I knew so little about two days ago, my experience here has piqued my interest and I want to learn as much as I can about this small, previously Soviet country. For one thing, I didn't realize that it had been part of the USSR. Call me ignorant - I just don't have much experiential knowledge about Eastern Europe. But there is a wealth of culture here in the city and in the rest of the country that I wish I had time to see and experience. But we leave tomorrow morning to go back.
Today Katherine, James, Brad, and I went on a tour that our hostel's tour division is just starting to give - "Soviet Yerevan." They give other walking tours of the city, but this is a new one they are trying out - we were the first group. I am going to write a blog post about it after I have time to process my thoughts on it all. This topic is one that I want to explore more in the coming days - in Georgia, too - that is, the experience of living through Soviet times. But I need some time to think about today's tour before I write about it. And when I am back in Georgia, I want to talk to some people about those days. I'll write about it a few times, I am sure.
After a full day of exploring Yerevan and eating really good Armenian food and drinking Armenian wine with some other ex-pat Americans who teach in Moscow, James, Katherine, and I walked to the outdoor ice-rink a couple of blocks away to skate for a little while. We stood in line and looked at the signs on the little house where tickets were sold and skates were rented. Of course, we couldn't read anything and we realized that we didn't know how to tell anyone what skate size we needed. My plan was to take off my boot and just hand it over for measuring. Good plan, right? But as we stood there, we realized that the line wasn't moving anywhere. There was someone inside the little skate-rental hut, but no one was getting any skates. After about 15 minutes, we got sick of standing in line and decided to go back to the hostel and try the Armenian apricot wine I had bought earlier (which was delicious, I might add!). On our way back, we passed a crepe stand that we had passed several times. It was cold out, and the idea of a hot, steamy, fresh crepe was too tempting to resist. So we didn't!! With a little Nutella, they were scrumptious! Walking back to the hostel, hot, sweet crepe in hand - it didn't matter that we didn't skate. We'll go skating another day...
|Katherine and James at the crepe stand with English and Armenian signs|