06 August 2010

I don't think we're in Kansas

We're certainly back in Russia.

One of our bags was lost and I had to fill our paperwork in triplicate. It would have been duplicate, but I made "too many mistakes" (2) on one--because the date format kept changing on the form.

No one met us (odd) so we had to take a cab. The first group of cabs, wrangled by one guy, wanted us to trust their meter. I asked for an estimate of the charges and they told me 1500-2000 rur. I declined. They asked what I thought a fair price was and I told them 800 rur. They continued to try to convince me that 1300 was a fair price as I asked around to try to find a cab that wasn't theirs. I found a nice man who led me past the corrupt wrangler to another wrangler (head to the far left after exiting baggage claim--skip the first group) who charged me 700 rur. Ha!

It's incredibly hot. It's incredible how hot 90F can feel with no a/c in the city. Tomorrow it will be 97F.

Discovered there was no running water when I went to take a shower this morning.

My car is undriveable due to a flat front tire and expired-while-we-were-away registration. They can't renew it because my kartooshka, proving I work for the consulate, also expired while we were away. So, we walked the three-mile loop of school-consulate-home to pick up the car key and expired registration from school (car left there to avoid surprise towings while away) and deliver it to the consulate along with passport-sized photos (had those--Ha, ha!) for my kartooshka. Once that is done, they will re-register my car. AND I left them money for the insurance policy that will expire in September, hoping that we won't have a disruption then. (Ha, ha, ha. Right.)

We had blini for lunch on the way home. The blini did not agree with my stomach. At all. Fortunately, the water is running again.

We have to figure out car-less shopping and ways to beat the heat tomorrow. Maybe a trip to Mega...

Yep. We're back.

[In brief: Do I want to return to live in the US? Yes. Why don't I just do that? I'm a single mom. I have to have a job. The market for teachers in the US is rotten right now. AND international schools sign contracts much earlier (November--everything sorted by February) than US schools (May, June, July, August...). I can't be jobless. Lexi and I both like to eat. So, we'll see. Will we be back sometime? Most assuredly. At least, that's my plan. Quit snickering. My guess at this point is another two years on the international circuit, but not in Russia, and then back to the US.]

More catch-up on its way. Catching up on life and sleep first. Thanks for sticking around!


Dawn said...

My aunt and uncle teach at the Int'l school in Amsterdam (They were at the one in Moscow before that). Want me to connect you with them?

Anonymous said...

welcome back - and just for the record I vote for your immediate return to the US. how about San Francisco? :-)

Anonymous said...

As a teacher, I completely understand!! And at the very end of the day, how many of us can say we've had such an adventure as you are on. I would love to live abroad for a bit- likely won't ever happen, I'm sure! LOL! :o)

Jen said...

I'm glad that you made it home safely. Good luck with getting everything back to normal!

Esther said...

My niece went to the International School in Amsterdam about 10 yrs ago- the whole family LOVED it!! My sister said it was the best experience and everyone on staff was fabulous!

Esther said...

PS- she attended the Amsterdam school for 3 years.

Tami said...

So glad to have you back! :)

Tina in CT said...

Love the two titles too.

Working in a boarding school here in the US might be nice as you'd have a network built in, housing, meals in the dining hall if you care to eat there. Maybe they sign contracts earlier than public schools.

Holland would be much easier to live in than Russia for sure. Not all the haggling and red tape.

Sending cool thoughts your way to escape the horrid heat.

I'm sure Lexi's grandparents hated seeing you both leave. I know the feeling.