One afternoon this past week, for the life of me I can’t remember – all the days just seem to blur together here, I have no sense of time – we had the afternoon off from YD school. Oh, I think I do remember – it was Wednesday the 15th because that was the Presidential Election Day here. So no YD school – what are we to do with our free afternoon? Go find a robot sculpture of course! No lie, that is what we did, set out of on a robot hunt. Amy, one of my cluster mates, saw a picture of on the internet (in the US) of this robot sculpture somewhere in Sumgayut. Our LCF was finally able to find out how to get there from asking several different people for directions. Everyone laughed at us when we said that is where we were going, but us Americans did not care. (However, Sabina, our LCF, who is Azerbaijani does care, but we love to embarrass her so it made it that much more fun!) So we head off that afternoon to find this robot. Well, we took a couple of buses, but finally ended up in the middle of nowhere at some type of factory/plant building. But what did we see!?! An empty plot where the robot used to be! Not even lying, the robot was gone; a small piece of information people forgot to tell us when we asked for directions! We decided to be very Peace Corps-y and said ‘it was the journey, not the destination that is important’ (completely laughing at the entire situation). So as you can see from the picture below we decided to make our own robots on home of the once robot.
As I mentioned earlier my cluster likes to push the nerves of our LCF, and we went a little too far on Thursday during class. So to show her that we really do love her we decided to bake her cookies. Amy had her mom send her the recipe for chocolate chip cookies as well as the recipe for peanut butter cookies. We got out of YD class a lot later than usual on Thursday, but no problem; Amy and I were going to go the market and buy the supplies and Allison was going to come over the Amy’s house after she ate dinner. I got help from an Azerbaijani PC staff to have grammatically correct sentence in Azerbaijani saying I what I was going to do. So I called my host family and told them my plans. I was feeling pretty good about myself. Then, Amy and I successfully got all the ingredients from the market – still feeling pretty good about ourselves. Now, that was a bit of a task, minus the obvious language barrier Amy and I had to try and guess the amounts of our recipe, which was in cups, in kilograms to tell the people at the market how much we needed (One does not buy a box of sugar, flour, etc…, instead you say how much you want and they measure it out for you there). Not as easy as it sounds – but we did it. We go back to Amy’s house and continue to guestimate everything as we have no measuring tools. It is a miracle the cookies turned out edible, much less decent tasting! (We were told there were very delicious, maybe people just being polite! J No, they were not half bad, not the same as in the States, but not bad.) So we are baking away when my phone rings. It is my host family asking me when I will be home. I told them again when I would be home. We were having a lot of fun baking and doing some homework when I looked outside and all of a sudden it was dusk. You are probably thinking – so what. But, the PC strongly advises not to go out alone after dark. So I decided to go ahead home turning down the offer of walking home with Alison and her host dad (he was coming to get her later to walk her home). I turned down that offer simply because I had no idea how to tell my host family that. And it is a good thing I did! I headed off to get home before dark and as I turned down my street what did I see? Definitely my host sister and aunt pacing outside our gate looking for me. So it turns out that my ‘perfect sentence’ was not that perfect because they had no idea where I was! They just knew that I was a lot later than I normally was and they were worried. I have decided that I am the ‘special’ child they never had! I am sure they think I am a complete idiot as I can’t do anything alone! (I am laughing out loud as I type this; I think it is completely hysterical. But, I know my family really likes me and I really like my family – so it is all good!)