Carol Bontekoe

This blog has been keeping track of my adventures since 2004. The stories and the adventures have come from my college dorm room to Uganda, Peace Corps Kyrgyzstan, learning Dutch in the Netherlands to living in the wilds of Homer, Alaska. I went back to school in Amsterdam to study Theaterwetenschap (Theatre Science) at University of Amsterdam. And now my adventures as a Fruit Fly, a Sexy Unicorn, and creating a movement with Team Sparkle in Chicago.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Helping a Kid out

Today on one of my 12 year old students I could smell cigarettes all over him. He tried to deny that he had smoked cigarettes and then caved and admited... maybe he had one. His older sister came in my room later and I told her, she granted me permission to tell their Babushka who lives on my street. But before I told her I gave him a lecture on the dangers of smoking. I also had a pamphlet on smoking in my room and showed him a picture. None of this seemed to be phasing him, he seemed more impressed that I could tell he had smoked. As, if I knew some kind of vodoo or something. So, I took him aside and gave him a piece of advice: If your going to smoke don't wear a wool sweater it traps in the smell. Lighter fabrics breath more, therefore not trapping in the smells. Lighter fabrics ruin my magical power for knowing if you ahve smoked or not. I feel in my own small way I'm making a difference in the world.

Thursday, January 4, 2007

New Year's Day

have gotten several comments asking me what my everyday life is like. The things I don’t think you guys understand is I do write about my everyday life, my everyday life is just that random. But here let me try:There is one bus that goes back and forth from my village. It never leaves on time, except the very last one from the city I need to catch it from at five. If I show up even a minute late I have to walk 20 minutes to the edge of the city where I can hitchhike back to my village. The other day coming back from New Year’s celebrations out on the other side of country I came back at 5:05. I tried to get back in time. I left early. I didn’t eat. I was focused. Alas, I was 5 minutes too late. I walked to the outside of town, if it now VERY cold here. By the time I got to the outside of the city I had lost feeling in my feet, face, and hands. Then I had to wait for about an hour, for someone to stop for me. Finally I did get picked up, by a milk truck. The milk truck was able to drop me off within a mile of my village. As I walked into it I was confronted by a new trend, sleds being pulled by cars or motorcycles. Some of my students have asked me to hope on board but first I consulted my P.C. Handbook and no where in there does it say we can’t get pulled behind a car on a sled. Granted if I do it and get hurt there will then be a rule against it and future generations of PCVs will have to ask themselves who was stupid enough to do that. I’ll probably have to wear my bike helmet for it.I rang in the New Year to Smack That. A delightful little song that is played none stop here. We didn’t get much of a chance to enjoy the song because we were in a state of panic over the fireworks display. No, this was not a display put on by the city it was all the fireworks that the locals were setting off in the crowd of people. Not just setting off in the crowd of people but it to power lines. My mom wouldn’t even let me fly a kite anywhere near the power lines much less shoot off FIREworks into them. Because every other volunteer here has a computer I was able to watch two bootleg copies of recent releases. The first is Borat. It is a story about Kazakh journalist traveling through America. Very funny, but Sacha Baron Cohen should have come out here first because he could make Borat even funny if he studied this area. It’s kinda weird because he makes Almaty sound trashy and Almaty is awesome, very expensive, and very westernized. There are a lot of gypsies who are camped out near where I live so I do appreciate any references to gypsies. Also, in season two of the Ali G show his beat the Gypsy dance kinda looks like how some guys here dance so I have incorporated it into my dance moves. Also, I saw The Departed. Good. No Great movie. Even on crappy bootleg copy it was really great so I can only imagine in America on in the theater. Although the boys did get to see how worked up I can get in a suspenseful movie. Oh, I read A LOT. Do you feel like you understand my everyday life now? No? I’ll try better next time to explain the complete randomness.