(All opinions and descriptions of life in Ukraine contained herein are mine. I do not, nor am I qualified to,
express the official opinions of the Peace Corps or the U.S. Government.)

Saturday, October 23, 2010

First month in Ukraine: Picture edition!

So here I am- one month in. Amazing how time flies when you’re working your rear off. I seriously haven’t worked this hard in my entire life. I mean, in terms of the shere volume of information that I must force my brain to ingest each day is pretty ridiculous. Like I said in the previous post, 4 hours of language training followed by technical training for about an hour and a half and sometimes tutoring or lesson planning following that. So all in all I’m getting about 6-7 hours of intensive training Monday through Saturday.
Now here is the disclaimer: no complaints at all. Just describing the scenario. But yes, it’s the most intense thing I’ve ever been through. I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world though. I feel myself understanding more and more not only about Ukraine and the language and the substance that I am teaching, but also internally a lot of things are happening that are very positive.
I feel like I’m becoming more of myself, and that’s exactly what I came over here for. Anyways, I am going to keep the written portion to a minimum today and let my photos from the past month speak for themselves. Most of them were taken with a little pocket camera given to me by my wonderful safta (grandma), so the quality isn’t that of my DSLR, but hey, it’s still a picture. The pictuers in Kiev were all taken with my DSLR, and I think I finally feel comfortable enough in Obukhiv to bring my DSLR around with me, so expect higher quality photos.
So Quick desclaimer: Pictures are a bit jumbled chronnologically speaking so forgive the lack of organization on my part, i tried my best but this blog doesn't make it easy to move the pictures around... enjoy!
Host families grandkids! From left to right: Katya (6 years old), Danya (10 months old), Leira (11 years old)

Host family from left to right: Ruslana, Katya, Danya and Leira

Danya and Leira

Antoli, a.k.a "Tolik"

Leira working on her Markovka (carrot) Babushka doll

At Peace Coprs headquarters in Kiev. Allsion + Obama= Love


Bri and Alison

Girls of Obukhiv Katie, Bri and Alison

McDonalds of Kiev (there were a bunch of locations, but we chose this one)

McDonalds in Ukrainian... its funny how i hate McDonalds in the states, but once I get over-seas I start to crave it. I guess it just reminds me of home or something. Anyways, I think i'm over it already, it will be a once-a-year type of treat considering how expensive it is in comparison to authentic Ukrainian cuisine...

Me + Kiev= Very serious

The whole cluster in Kiev

Can you say photoshopped?

This means "Vinnitza", also known to be the origin of my families name= Vinitzky

Obukhiv and Trippilia groups posing in front of the Dnipre after Football match

Katie and the Soccer field cow

Igor (Ruslana's husband) barbequeing some "shishlik" A.K.A. Pork


MMM MMM Sala + Kartoshka= Ukrainian dream food (Potato stuffed with pig fat)

Urkainian power drink

Igor and I

Tolik in the Forest

Katya and I in a Tree

Luba and Danya- my favorites

Ok now a snap back to the First day in Ukraine where we had a laptop party in my room to exchange music, movies and programs before we left for our host sites.

Group 40B before we left for host sites

My first pic with my host family!!! From left to right: Luba, Katya, Ruslana and I.
Central Obukhiv

First day of language class!

Planning wall and Alie (my TCF)

First Ukrainian party: Host mothers grandons Baptismal celebration!

Leiran and Luba

Igor and myself toasting to the baptised boy

Katie Alison and myeslf. We found this house while going for a walk around Obukhiv and decided we wanted to check it out. So this guy named Sergey that was working on the house gave us a little tour. It had an Indoor Pool, a Sauna and like 3 different stories. No big deal, only a Million U.S.

Pic. of the front of the house. Katie and Alison with Sergey.

My building in Obukhiv with one of the many fiats that drive around town to the left.

Trippilia, supposedly Ukraines "oldest village" (dates to 7,000 B.C.). See the cow roaming the soccer field?

Health day in Trippilia= practicing putting on condoms!!!

More condom practicing!!!

Taking a break from language and tech classes to enjoy a beer at our local pool hall "Pyramid". From left to right: Me, Alison, Adam, Katie and Rocky (open your eyes man!!!)

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