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.

Saturday, March 3, 2007

All Up in the Air!

So sorry that I haven’t written here for a while. Life has been a little crazy. This entry will probably be a little boring but it is to catch people up on my life.I recently switched sites. New school and an apartment to myself. The apartment came furnished with only a couch so it is my little oasis in the mass of my junk that I have no place to put anywhere. The apartment also came with; hold your breath, a hot shower and a FLUSH TOILET!!! This was very exciting for me, and since I have no real furniture to speak of the first few days I spent hanging out in the bathroom admiring my flush toilet. I ended up putting up a map of the world I have in Russian so I could feel like I was learning something hanging out in there all day.My new school is awesome. A much better fit for me. I teach 4th and 1st form, although I haven’t had 1st form because they have been on vacation all week. I’m running lots of different clubs: Debate Club, Science Club, Conversation Club, ACCELS club, and I’m going to be starting some sports clubs soon. I also teach adults English twice a week at the American Corner in the Library. It is strange starting at a new school because I have to start the process of introducing myself with everyone all over again. The other day I had to use the bathroom before my classes but an older lady, I don’t know if she is a teacher or not beat me to it. So, I patiently waited as she turned off the light to the bathroom I said Hyet, Hyet, ne nada (no,no, no need) She gave me a little bit of a dirty look and didn’t say anything. She then pointed to a door down the hallway. I looked at it, and then looked back at her. She then took me to the other door and told me this was the student’s bathroom. I said fine, not understanding at first that she thought I was a student and then she left. I looked in at the squatter holes that are for the students and back down the hall at the teacher’s bathroom with a flush toilet. The older lady had turned down another hallway but I could hear her talking so I knew she was close by. I decided to make a run for it; the only problem is I was wearing my rain pants still. I was wearing because it is always muddy and dirty yet everyone talks about if I have mud on the bottom of my pants so I was trying to keep them clean. I made a run pasted her only 5 feet from her swishing as loudly as possible. I locked the door and took my time hoping she wouldn’t be outside the door when I opened it. I must have stalled long enough because she was gone. It’s weird I have always been considered much older than I actually am and now I’m an adult and need to be viewed as one I get accused of being a student. There is a very good sports complex near my school, so I wanted to take some classes there. I found the perfect one for me, belly dancing. I have already gone to two classes. I’ve always been bitter that I have never gotten to take a dance class and there might be good reasons for me never having taken one before. I’m terrible. I have no expectations though and just view it as a chance to get out in the community and meet some more people. It’s also one of the perks of being a foreigner. In America I would have to acknowledge that I know I look ridiculous, here I’m just the foreigner that doesn’t know any better. Love it! The first lesson was tough because I was in the very back of the room and couldn’t see the instructor and it was like a bad game of telephone where everyone is just watching the person in front of them and it becomes slowly worse down the line. Even though I couldn’t see the instructor in the mirror in the front of the room I’m a good 6 inches taller than anyone else in the room and could easily watch myself. I have lessons three nights a week so maybe by the end of my service I’ll be able to do one maybe even two moves correctly. I’m really focusing on the hand movement parts more then the booty shaking and the actual belly dancing part.Before moving to my new site I spent a week down in Naryn which is considered the “Authentic Kyrgyz” part of Kyrgyzstan. It was very interesting for me, because to be honest I don’t know much about actual Kyrgyz people. Although, now at my new school I do have a few Kyrgyz students and my Director/neighbor is Kyrgyz. I got to spend sometime with my friend Remer’s family which was interesting for me because it was one of my first interactions with a Kyrgyz family. Remer’s host father told me I speak good Russian. When I said that wasn’t true he corrected me with, “I said GOOD not Excellent.” Ahhhh. Thanks I stand corrected. That has become one way I have figured out if guys are flirting with me when I am talking to boys my age, they will tell me I speak good Russian. That being a blatant lie that we both know is a lie I now know where we stand.Overall, everything is going well and it is good for me to have a new site. I like it a lot and hope things will be going better now. Sorry for not updating sooner for those of you who have complained and please email me telling me how you are doing.