So, today after a strange dream posted earlier (see below), continued to be strange. So I fell asleep in my contacts, clambered out of bed, splashed some water on my face, ate breakfast, brushed my teeth and scribbled down some of the first steps for the SPA grant I'm gonna shoot to apply for.. eek!
So applying for a grant is a huge process and I feel that getting my cp to do a lot of the work (capacity building component) is like swimming in molasses: you would sink slowly and not get anywhere, not that I know what it's like, but it's how I imagine. I will be impressed if we make the deadline, and if not, we'll have a kickass grant proposal for the May deadline. We set dates over the next week to do some intensive work. Cross your fingers and pray. Then next Friday, we are going to Tbilisi to put together some prices. Later that day we'll do the budget section of the grant to be more detailed.
What else is there you may ask? Our small town will be graced by the presence of Mary and Frank on Tuesday. Mary is second in charge and Frank is the Caucasus Desk Officer for PC, but he's temporarily fulfilling an admin position. Peace Corps wants to show him how we live, so I'll be entertaining as well next week, which I love! They want to meet my current host family, and see where I'll be living.
So I have been holding an English club after school 2 days a week. I have tons of material for the students, but no students are coming... kind of a disappointment, once again slowly but surely wins the race!
So I'm walking home from school, talking on the phone, and this little girl says, "Hello!" and smiles. This is not uncommon, as most volunteers stick out as foreigners like sore thumbs, so it happens everywhere I go. I return hello and keep walking/talking. Then I notice the little girl looks at me adoringly and starts to follow me. She's a little too well-dressed to be a gypsy, not that there are gypsies in my town, but you never know, so I wonder how she must know me. Then she tells me in Russian to follow her to her apartment. I tell Barbara on the phone I have to follow this girl, as I have a hunch it's about my new apartment, and get off the phone. Sure enough, I follow her to my neighbor's house and meet my landlord there. How freakishly strange/cute is that?
It turns out my apartment had finished it's remodeling, I see bars on the door, and am completely shocked! We have tea, and my landlord said she was unable to get ahold of me via telephone, because I had written my number down incorrectly. It's not that I wrote it incorrectly, but she was adding in numbers on her own. Anyways, everything worked out! So she says let's go take a look at the apartment and see what else she needs to bring for me.
She opens the doors, and it was like a dream scene from an underbudgeted Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, minus the camera crew. This apartment was completely different. It blew me away! She had done so much work! All of the major flaws in appearance had been corrected, there was new furniture, it felt like a home. She had even installed the 200 liter tank for water, all it needs is the heater and I can have hot water! She improved the toilet, and it looks like I'll actually be able to sit on a seat! It's perfect, and I couldn't have asked for more, given the circumstances. There's not a refrigerator, but that may turn out to be this apartment's only short coming. I am blown away and thoroughly impressed with this lady. It seems as though I will be moving in on Monday! A new chapter in my life is about to open: the life of a single American male, living on his own! I will be footsteps away from the school. footsteps.