happy Ukrainian Constitution Day!
Today is Constitution Day in Ukraine. So far I've only heard complaints about the constitution, as it apparently is directed more at the government than at giving rights to citizens, but no one complains about the day off from work. And I definitely don't complain about the cost of Internet today (half-price on weekends and holidays). My only complaint is that while the post office is open, the door to the hallway where my mailbox is is locked, so I can't see if the package I know I'm getting from Jason showed up today.
I'm going to be more or less incommunicado for the next few weeks. On Friday, I leave for a Peace Corps conference (Ukrainian language and teaching advice...I'm running a session on teaching in primary schools) and will be there through next Wednesday. I'll be home on next Thursday (and will hopefully check my email then), and then on Friday I head to Krolevets in Sumy Oblast to work at a camp for ten days.
Things that have to be done before leaving for all of this:
~write lesson plans for camp (advantage in having 1/2 price Internet today)
~try to eat up the food in my fridge...this is difficult, as people both give me lots of food and then invite me over to dinner. As I generally eat one large meal, one small meal, and the occasional snack during a day, this means that my food doesn't get used up very fast
~do laundry...am going over to the Y's for dinner tonight, and Nadia lets me use her machine :)
Last night was my last tutoring lesson for the summer with Julia, who is proof that a twelve-year-old can actually speak pretty good English if there is a) motivation, b) brains, and c) a good teacher at her school involved. We've been reading Winnie-the-Pooh in English and finished it. Other highlights of the last few months include singing folk songs in English, playing paper dolls, and both of us learning card games from each other. After an abbreviated lesson, her mom took us to the Balaklaika River and we went swimming. I hope that I didn't get any crazy diseases from doing so, but it was definitely a nice way to spend an evening. Although Luba, Julia's mom, who generally looks at me with a look of "You're a little strange, you know?", couldn't understand why I don't wear a bikini to swim in as is customary here for almost all women, regardless of age. I left it at "I don't like bikinis," as I don't know the language for "I don't think they're modest" and "I don't look good in them" seemed a little rude, as Luba is a XXL and still wears one.