Thursday, August 27, 2009

A second rushed email.

Hey family,
The airport delivered two suitcases to me at 5:30 this morning. Unfortunately, only one was mine. Fortunately, the airlines said that they knew this, so they came back later today and gave me mine (turns out the other one belonged to a girl in my group).

So, my house has a good computer with skype and great internet. The metro is crowded, smells like B.O. and will throw you onto other people if you aren't holding a handrail. Lots of fun. I'm not being sarcastic actually. I talked our native coordinators into NOT calling Lesya to meet me at the metro station at the end of the day; instead I walked home by myself. And didn't get lost. Highly independent, I know. They're also letting me ride the metro by myself tomorrow.

ILP gave us all-access metro passes good until the end of the year. They also provided us with pay-as-you-go phones so we can get a hold of each other and our host families if we get lost. It's free on our network to each other, but probably pretty expensive international. They just had us put 20 hrynia on it, because supposedly cell phones are REALLY cheap here. There are stations all over the city like ATMs, except they're for adding money to your phone. 8.5 hrynia is one US dollar, as a reference. We are getting a killer exchange rate right now, apparently. We went out for a huge delicious lunch and it was less 30uah (hyrnia). ATM machines work great, no problems with money at all.

Today we met in groups according to where we live, and learned how to use the metro, how to exchange money, and how to get to school. We had a meeting with all the native coordinators here and went over stuff and then we went downtown for lunch and a wander. Our group of 14 teachers is split between three schools. The school I'll be teaching at has three of us, and the school is brand new this year, so they say we have our work cut out for us.

I don't think I have jetlag at all, even though Kiev is 9 hours ahead of Salt Lake. I just didn't nap yesterday, and stayed up until about 11, then woke up at ten this morning. Seems to have done the trick. I'm getting a blog together, by the way. 143.

PS: Military/24hour time and Celsius are hard to get used to.
PPS: When I told you we have three dogs and two cats, I forgot to mention the parrot.

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