Non-lengthy things I want to tell you that, when added together, might be lengthy:
A) The past few days have been chilly. The pastor’s wife tells me this is because it snowed a foot and a half in the mountains, and the wind blowing down on us from on high is tainted with chill. It finally warmed up a bit today, but the nature of the concrete houses here means that indoors is several degrees behind the warming up outdoors. That’s not great, of course, but I don’t mind too much as long as I’m not still going to bed like this:
[me and necessary sleeping accouterments ; do note the bottle full of hot water; circa November and February]
B) Cooler weather aside, spring and summer aren’t going anywhere, and the animals are back out to pasture. This means dodging cow pies in the road again and listening to sheep bells.
C) Construction projects have resumed as well. Transcarpathian people are more comfortable with transience than American society in many ways but especially regarding building things. There are no construction companies here; every man knows how to mix concrete, use a level and plumb line, and lay tile. They build when they aren’t farming or otherwise working, and this means that construction projects often take years to finish. The center of the school compound has been a pile of bricks since I arrived, and only after the ground thawed did any more work on the new pavilion begin. They’re re-tiling the floor in the kitchen/dining building this weekendas well, and this has rendered the only door to the kitchen inaccessible. The students are gone until tomorrow, so the cooks don’t need access to the kitchen, but they usually leave some food and tea around for the porter and me on these solitary weekends. Any time since Friday that I have wanted to enter the kitchen, I have had to enter through the serving window in the dining room. See exhibit a:
D) Another cold weather anecdote: the cold snap has brought trouble to farmers, killing newly planted tomatoes and cucumbers, even those well-established in a greenhouse.
The other day, I had a theatre lesson with the girls in Beregszász, finally. We’d been on a hiatus for about a month, what with worship services and Easter break and my trip to Kiev. We decided that there just wasn’t enough time left to pull of the skit we had been working on, but the girls didn’t think that was any reason to stop meeting. We’ll just play theatre games in English until the end of the school year with no greater purpose than our own enjoyment and a safe space to practice conversational English skills. After the lesson, the girls shyly and eagerly (how do middle school girls create that combination?) handed me a bag of new cucumbers from someone’s garden, telling me that these veggies were very dear just now. Dear and delicious and a generous gift.