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February 2, 2014

Well, today was an exercise in futility! {I know, when does a day here go exactly according to plan? Never. But still…I always hope…}

I got up this morning, got ready, and headed out the door to church: so far so good. My problem came when two things happened at once: I started trying to respond to things on my phone, while a girl got on the marshrut and asked me if she could sit next to me. I scooted over, which effectively blocked my view of the upcoming marshrut stops, and since the marshrut doesn’t announce upcoming stops, I should have paid more attention at each stop, and looked up just in time to realize that I did not recognize anything out the window. My heart sank; I had missed the stop for the metro! I asked the bus driver about it and asked if the metro was near or far to where we were so that maybe I could get out and walk back. He said something in Russian, which I didn’t understand completely, but from what I could tell he was telling me to wait, we’d go back by the metro. Sure enough, we did, but those extra 5 minutes meant I was later getting to the metro, which meant I was later getting to the last stop where I needed to catch the next marshrut and which meant I missed it and had to wait for the next one. {Does my getting-to-church routine sound complicated? It is.} Ok, no big deal, I’ll still be close to on time. I stood there and waited, and waited, and waited some more. Finally a new marshrut came and I assumed he would leave soon, since according to what I thought was the schedule he should have been leaving soon. Nope. As the time ticked closer and closer to 11 I debated what to do. If the bus doesn’t leave the metro till 11 (when church starts) and it takes 40 minutes to get to the city where church is, plus ten minutes to walk there, what’s the point in even going all that way to miss the entire service and just go back home again?

In the end I got off the marshrut, hopped back on the metro, and headed home. An entire 2.75 hours spent doing and accomplishing nothing! Even though it wasn’t technically my fault {or was it? I could blame the phone, or the girl, or the marshrut, all of which had a part, so I am not sure which one in the end deserves all the blame} I still felt so guilty for missing church! A friend had invited me to go see the Russia/Poland Davis Cup match this afternoon but I had told her no since I wouldn’t be able to make it back from church in time.  It was kind of funny to me that since I had missed church it meant I did then have the time to go. But as penance I stayed home, ha. Regardless of how it happened I would have felt even more terrible missing church and then attending a tennis match instead. So I read my Bible instead. =) Later I’ll listen to a sermon from back home. It will be sort of like church, ha.

Anyways…here are a few random happenings from the week:

1. I got new light bulbs for my room. Borrrring, I know! I’m pretty sure you know you are a “grown up” when you are excited about light bulbs! {Or maybe it just means you live in a foreign country where you don’t really speak the language, and any small accomplishment is reason for celebration.} Either way, it made me happy to finally have them. My dark room was starting to get depressing. Combined with the lack of early morning sunshine here…yeah,  not fun.

2. Also, I got an unlimited 3 month metro pass! This is serious cause for celebration! I can’t even tell you how wonderful it is to be able to hop on and off any bus/metro even for just a short jaunt down the road, without paying each time! {I used to buy a 60 ride pass twice a month, but I carefully allotted my rides and didn’t freely ride just anywhere. Now I can just go wherever whenever I feel like it, without feeling like I am wasting money doing so.} I am so thankful to Olga for telling me how to buy one!

3.  Today a woman got on the metro to sell potato peelers out of her bag (typical for this specific area on the metro since it goes above ground and is quieter and hence people can talk and be heard instead of having to yell above the noisy underground metro). I opened my eyes to watch for a bit and as soon as she started into her sales pitch, I realized she was moving her lips but nothing was coming out! I though, “oh, how sad, she can’t talk, but she is trying at least!” Then it hit me. I pulled out an ear bud and yep, no need to feel sorry for her, ha. Dork, Jen.

4. The other day while waiting for a mini bus to take me to Bible study {had to let THREE pass before I was able to get in one, they were all so full that people were having a hard time closing the door!} I noticed this car in the middle of the very busy street. Apparently the car had a flat tire and a man was changing the tire for the driver, right in the middle of the street. You’d think that with such a small car they could have easily moved the car off to the side of the road but nope, with cars whizzing by, the guy was  down on the ground trying to change it while the two occupants stood outside nearby (seen above the passing car). Craziness.

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5. My friend and I booked our plane tickets for the first week of March. This girl will be celebrating her next birthday in Croatia! (We’re also going to Bosnia and Herzegovina, Slovenia and Serbia. Will be interesting, I’ve never been couch surfing before, ha. If I make it back alive, I’ll tell you all about it!)

6. Life continues on here…and my schedule continues to change like no other. I swear God is preparing me to be an evangelist’s wife or something because…I can’t get a schedule nailed down for the life of me! People keep changing things all. the. time. Thank goodness for a wall calendar, I literally pencil everything in – I would go crazy otherwise.

And…that’s it. It’s cold here. But it can only get warmer, right?

Have a fun week, friends!

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