Go figure … yesterday I was wearing a tee shirt and we were at the Aqua Park, and the water looked quite tempting! This morning we woke up to SNOW! It has been snowing all day today, and everything is coated with a pristine layer of white. As I was going to sleep last night, I heard the “hiss” of the radiators starting to heat up, so I suspected that something was up. Sure enough, “sneg idyot” (it’s snowing). Even though the town officials had decreed that there would be no central heat until three days of below 0 weather, they must have reconsidered when they saw Willard Scott’s forecast.
Another exciting surprise was that David woke up fever free! He had decided to take another pain pill at midnight, but woke up at 5 a.m., having slept straight through. The fever has officially broken. He is a completely new man today, it’s amazing. Maybe the pickle juice and vodka did the trick after all! Or could it be the Cipro that he finally took? We may never know.
It was interesting to see in the news that a Soyuz rocket blasted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome yesterday. Seems like I did hear a slight sonic boom early in the morning … (yes, Liz, that would be like you hearing something going off from Cape Canaveral while you were in Charlotte). Still it’s neat to be here knowing that something that newsworthy was going on not far to the west.
Today is Saida’s third birthday. When Aida came to pick us up, Saida was dressed in her Sunday best, and had her hair in two enormous white bows. We had brought her a Nutcracker Barbie, which she opened in the car. She was so happy to have it! Aida brought a cake to the Baby House, and we celebrated with the older kids’ groupa. We all held hands and walked around in a circle around Saida, singing the Kazakh “Happy Birthday” song. Then David and I sang her the American version. All the kids in the groupa had a piece of cake, as did Melanie. She lapped it up.
After the party we went back to Melanie’s groupa and spent the remainder of the visit with the kids. Back at home, we had another delicious lunch prepared by Inna, and collapsed for our afternoon siesta. I think we are going to bring Melanie to the apartment in the next day or two, so our lazy days are coming to an end. Suits me just fine! I can’t wait to give her a bath, and get used to her routine.
This afternoon we missed the “going away” party for our Spanish friends, as they showed up an hour earlier than our visit time. We were disappointed, but apparently they were in a hurry so had to dash in and dash out. I think they were driving to Almaty this evening, and the roads were probably bad. We have their address and email anyway .. we’re already planning a family vacation to Barcelona in the future. Way off in the very distant future. Way off.
We had a nice, uneventful visit this afternoon. We have reclaimed the little playroom that the Spaniards always used, so we could spend time alone with Melanie, and not with 10 other little kids climbing all over us. Not that that’s a bad thing, it’s fun, but a little “alone” time is nice too. It seems that we always get them riled up anyway, when we come and go. David’s little friend Damir just cries and cries when we leave. Melanie is so “two” it’s not funny … we have a little spitfire on our hands. Put it this way: the only toys we take on the plane with be very soft ones.
For dinner, Aida took us to the “Astana” restaurant, where I decided to do as the Romans do, and tried the “Five Fingers” national dish, “Bishparmak” that is made out of … well, Mr. Ed would be shocked to hear that they eat his relatives here. One little shot of vodka along with it helped ease the guilt a little. (Suddenly after we finished I had this urge to answer David’s questions by beating my hoof on the floor). Actually it tasted a little like lamb to me; quite delicious. I didn’t need for Aida to tell me after dinner that they also eat “dog” here … the Korean population seems to think it’s a delicacy. We won’t go there. <woof!>
Next week will be busy: passport pictures to take, speeches to write, “rehearsal” for court. Bring it on.
P.S...David here -- we apologize for any technical difficulties that we had regarding our posting our blog last night...boy do we miss our DSL!!! Hopefully, we have corrected those problems to your satisfaction. For complaints, please call our help line -- 555-GoJumpinaLake!