First of all business. The general information is this. My new computer days are Monday and Thursday. These are the days that I check my e-mail and update my blog if I get a chance. Just thought I'd tell you all. Also if you would like to say привет to me through chat, I am usually on the Google Talk client about 6:30am Eastern Standard Time, Thursday mornings. Usually I'm on until about 7:30 or so because I chat with my american parents and then do my e-mail thang.
Now on to the stuff I know you want to hear.
As you know because I've mentioned it several times. I'm one of those people who likes to tell you about my exchange as it is. The good and the bad, because I don't want to give a dishonest impression. There are two sides to every coin. So let me be frank. Yesterday was hard in some ways. Mostly because I suddenly realized that I wasn't going to get to be with my loud, boisterous, obnoxious, loving family for Thanksgiving. And Thanksgiving is my favorite.
It just kind of hit me all of a sudden (It was a really bad time because babushka, dedushka, Raisa's sister and my host cousins were over) and I got really upset. And that's about all I'm going to say because I don't want to sound like I'm whining and I don't want to sound like I'm looking for a pity party because I'm not. I had a moment, I got over it. I feel better about it now. Exchange does that kind of thing to you. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger.
Yesterday evening turned out to be really good though. Lilia had said she knew some people who wanted to meet me. I'd never had sushi before so we went to a cafe where you can get it, and we met up with these two guys who were friends of Lilia's. It was an awesome evening. We sat in that cafe from maybe 8 or 8:30 until midnight when we decided to see what was going on elsewhere. The upshot of the whole thing is that I had a really really good time, which included not getting home until 3:45am and resulted in me feeling good about myself and this exchange basically all day. (except for a few moments in art class, but I've said enough about that in previous posts)
We went to Drakon. Drakon is what I guess is the best club in Yakutsk. I wouldn't know because I've only been to it and none of the others. So yeah, I went clubbing, and had a really good time. It was an interesting cultural experience. One of the things I found most interesting was that except for the beer and cigarettes, it was a lot milder than a school dance. What I mean is this. When you go to a high school dance back home, everyone is dancing like they're having sex with their clothes on. Here you had maybe one couple doing that. And one couple kept making out in the middle of the dance floor. Everyone else seemed to be there just to have a good time and feel the music. I sure did. I'm hoping to get to go again.
The major downside was that even though I did not have any beer, or alcohol, nor did I smoke (aside from what I inhaled second hand) I still came home reeking of cigarettes and beer and the next morning took a good long shower and washed my clothes.
Oh and I had a major freakout. Nothing horrible, but we were in the cafe and I ordered a soft drink. The chick brought it to me, and I drank some and all of a sudden I go. "There's ice in this glass." And everyone's like "What?" and I'm like "This is the first time I"ve had ice in a drink since I came to Russia." It was a cultural difference that I'd noticed and I thought about before, but drinking cold pop just really really freaked me out because it was...well...cold. And there was ice in the glass. And yeah, It felt odd for there to be ice there.
There were a couple of times where I couldn't follow conversations due to my lack of Russian skills, but for the most part, it felt really really good to just act like the stupid young adult I am. Yup. I hope to get together with that group again. I've already mentioned it to Lilia and she definitely agrees.
I guess the main point of this post is just to say that while exchange still gets me down sometimes, for the most part the good is outweighing the bad and with everyday that passes I get more used to it here, and more and more I think "Yeah, Yeah, I'm going to make it through, I'm going to be okay."
One other thing that I've found interesting is that since I've been distanced from my friends at home, I see them in a different light. Okay, it's not a different light really, it's just...I don't know. Because I'm farther away and not seeing them all the time, I can see their personalities better. Or maybe I've just found my own personality. Because we are influenced by our friends whether we notice it or not. SO maybe it's just that I can see with clear eyes who I really am. It's an interesting view.