Friday, October 4, 2013

Georgian Vacation Day 4 or “Reason #75 that Children Are Not for Me”

Gohar wakes up at 7am and I wake up at 7:20am. WE ARE ALMOST IN SYNC. We decide to go for a run right away which gets us both excited. We stretch and begin. The day is much more humid than the last and we start sweating like nobody's business. On the way back from the 15 minute mark the wind is strong which is a nice change. I keep trying to relax my shoulders since Gohar noticed I look too tense when I run. This of course just makes me more tense. We run by a group of kids who seem to be training for something – we call them “the army”. But they don't know how to sprint we notice. We finish a great run and decide to add some sprints/strides. We make an end mark with some rocks and do about 6 strides which always ends up making you feel like a rock star. We stretch some more and begin to head back. The lifeguard comes by and he and Gohar talk about running, and he says he runs every morning around 6am and every night. She says she will run with him the following night, as it will be our last night in Gonio. He asks if she will drink beer with him that night and she says she doesn't like/drink beer. He asks if she will drink a small cup. She repeats her answer.

We have our protein shake and decide to head to Batumi to see about riding those bikes. We are invested in this idea so much that we know it will probably fail. We eat some of the veggies we bought and head out, realizing the sun is not coming out but it is still a nice day. This mashootka is the first one so far that does not have an automatic door. When all the seats are full, we stop to pick up another passenger who is about to get on but then sees that all the seats are full and doesn't board. In Armenia the mashootka could be packed like sardines and people would still get on. We get off at the right spot and head straight to an internet cafe with one goal: extending our stay.  We originally bought our ticket to return on Wednesday night but we knew there was the option of extending – we just couldn't remember what days there were other than Wednesday. We were worried that it would be a Sunday, which we couldn't do, since one of Gohar's friend was in town for a ridiculously short period of time, and coming back Sunday night would not give her enough time to see her. We hoped there would be a Friday option. We logged on in order to find a friend from Yerevan to call the bus station for us and let us know our fate. She was online...but away. Gohar messaged her with a thousand exclamation marks and I messaged her saying we needed her. No reply. We both messaged people to call her but her phone was not on. Another friend was on but right before we asked him to do us the favour, Arpine (original friend) messaged me back saying she was there. I told her what we needed and she seemed annoyed because she thought something bad had happened. Shouldn't she have been happy/relieved nothing bad had happened? SORRY TO DISAPPOINT ARPINE! She called and made our day – we could extend until Friday night which meant we could have two full days in Kobuleti. We were happy and that happiness gave us a sense of entitlement that we would be able to rent bikes for a day. We were invincible.
Photographic evidence of Arpine being fed up with us
We began our journey of finding out where exactly to rent these bikes from. Two men were renting them from the bike stand and when Gohar tried her automatic Russian with them they surprisingly asked if she spoke English. A first! Gohar slickly switched and they told us we needed these specific bike cards and told us the place to get them was where the “dancing fountains” were in the centre by the Zeus statue. The instructions seemed specific enough but we had been in the centre and had seen no Zeus statue. We had seen a Poseidon statue. Get your Greek gods straight, boy. After many wrong turns and asking many people, we found the place. We went in and it was crowded and humid. Two tourists were in front of us asking all the questions we wanted to ask. We realized we needed to have brought passports and that the minimum time you could rent the bikes for was 10 hours, which was 20 lari. They asked everything I thought - “but what if we just ride for 2 hours – can we get the rest of our money back?” The rude teller told him the card was good for a year and the money would not be returned and asked them to make a decision and leave because people were waiting. We accepted that we wouldn't bike and left.

By this time Gohar let me know she was very hungry and we decided to go to a Georgian version of SAS to see what we could get. We bought a container of beans, an eggplant thing I've had before and a cornbread. Right before check out Gohar also wanted to get madzoun so we added that and we left to have a picnic. It took three test spots before we found the perfect place to sit and eat. The beans were of course the highlight, being too delicious to put into words. As much as I love my basooc dolma, Armenia has got nothing on the Georgian ability to use spices. They got it right. I decided I would buy too many spices when we were in Kobuleti to try and re-create these beans. Everything else was tasty and we decided to head back – Batumi was much more humid than Gonio and we were feeling tired because we are nene-central.

We rejected what seemed like 500 taxi invitations and got on our mashootka home. This one was a little more crowded and officially had about 2 men standing. Even little boys got up to let women sit. We got off and headed home to rest a bit before heading to the beach. But then the youngest family member of the house, Ana, saw us and we knew it was too late. She lead us into our rooms, made us close the door so her mom wouldn't realize she was there and played on Gohar's phone with a cat talking-back game. This would have been fine but this was one of the loudest and most hyper children ever and she would scream at the cat and we had to assume she was saying bad things. She would scream something, the cat would of course repeat it and then she would become really angry, I assume because the cat used her insults against her. She realized if she poked the screen she was punching the cat and really enjoyed that. A little too much. She then began licking Gohar's phone repeatedly for reasons unknown. I wish I understood Georgian.
Ana smiling because she knows where we sleep
Gohar napped a bit while I tried but it seemed like every single child in the neighbourhood began crying at the same time and I couldn't relax my tense eyebrows enough to sleep. When she woke up we decided to go to the beach but not do yoga. I thought this would be the trip where I would learn to love yoga and actually do it, but so far I have come up with an excuse not to do it every time—this time being “I am too tired for trying something I have never tried before but I will gladly splash around for an hour or so!” I am a creature of comfort apparently!

We swam and it was much nicer than the previous night – a little garbage here and there and a few jellyfish, but it was amazing and all under a neon orange sky. Gohar screams every time there is a jellyfish and it is so dramatic I automatically assume it is a shark. In the black sea. Stranger things have happened.

We are also getting what I think are June bugs in our room at night. I remember them from my childhood – we would have a lot in the basement and they were a kid's worst nightmare: blind bugs that could fly. I always thought they might be very well-intentioned flies, but due to their blindness could not help but bump into screaming children repeatedly. One fell on Gohar's pillow and as she gently put it out the window, I heard her say “go away June bug, your time is over” (it is July).

Observation: Growing up doesn’t make June bugs any less creepy apparently! Same for centipedes. Spiders can be OK.

No comments:

Post a Comment