2010. As my friend Sagar said, "My New's Years Resolution for 2010 is to move to America".
I've been a bad blogger the past few months. Here's a quick recap:
Counterpart moved back to Merke. I am now teaching in the mornings and tutoring after lunch. Excellent schedule.
Spent Thanksgiving and Christmas in Taraz with the Newbies (new volunteers who arrived in Kaz in August). Made pumpkin pie, Morris rolls, etc. AND my first turkey.
MST (Mid Service Training). All the Kaz 20 volunteers reunited in Almaty for a PC conference. Saw friendly old faces.
Thailand. Thailand. Thailand. Spent 10 days in Thailand with three other Peace Corps Volunteers (Corinne, Nick and Andy). Spent the first four days exploring Northern Thailand (Chiang Mai Province) - riding elephants, averaging 4 Thai meals a day, drinking delicious Thai beer, bamboo rafting down a river, "hiking" through the jungle and seeing waterfalls. Spent the last 5 days on an island (Koh Samed) doing absolutely nothing. Woke up early in the mornings and went for a run (until I got terrible blisters) then I started swimming (in the ocean!) in the mornings. Sat on a beach reading, throwing a frisbee, eating, playing cards, and doing nothing productive whatsoever all day long.
Returned to Merke. Celebrated the New Year with good friends (Sagar and AC - who returned from America earlier this fall) and rang it in together with the Russian neighbors.
Currently on Winter Break from schools until January 9th. Have split my time between Merke and Taraz with nothing on the agenda but movies and friends.
Kreshenya is on January 19th. For which I plan to head north to the city of Petropavlovsk to partake in an old Russian Orthodox tradition: jumping into a frozen river in Kazakh Siberia.
I've got lots of things to say and a little more time to say them, so look forward to hearing from me soon. In the mean time, Thailand pictures are posted on Facebook (you can email me for a link).