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International Adoption Stories

Ukrianian Adoption Journal (pg.4)

Rynok--- That is a good time to pause to list some of our favorite words in Ukrainian:

Favorite word-- -- Kharashow Sounds like "Horror Show". This is the all around “I’m okay-you’re okay” word. Cool, Swell, neato, good, okay, right, I understand-One pretty funny word does all that!

Thank You--- Spaseeba in Russian or Dyakooyou in Ukrainian.. In Kyiv most everyone used the Russian-here about half and half.

How much-Skilkee. Very helpful for knowing if a cab driver is "taking you for a ride" in addition for taking you for a ride. Make sure he replies in writing-- 15 and 50 sound very much alike in broken English-- That is the difference between a 3 and 10 dollar cab ride

Pectopah is restaurant--- noooooo silly, you need to remember it's Cyrillic. Make that Restoran when you use the proper alphabet.

Moloko is Milk--- Important because in cartons that look just like milk (down to the fat content) is Kefir-which is a yummy sour milk/yogurt mix (not yummy at all if you are chugging what you think is some cool refreshing milk).

Proshoo prinehstihs shcheh pihva? May I please have another Beer?

Pehrehproshooyu deh tooahleht? Where is the Pottie.

Ahhh Potties-Kyiv they were quite nice. Clean. Plenty of paper. Ivankiv..most do not work and TP is strictly a "if you want it you better bring it from home" sort of thing. Here in the "Hotel Happiness". They have large jugs of water in the bathroom since some of the toilets have no running water--- take a dump-dump in a couple of jugs of water and all is well.

Koshmar-That happens if you forget to bring the paper from home-- it is a nightmare-bad day sort of thing-- Missed the Bus, had to stand in the rain-needed to use the bus stop toilet with no paper and no flusher--- that is Koshmar.


Saturday, April 10, 2004

Mary here-Jim is ill today!
Slept well, but Jim awoke with the sickening feeling that the chicken he doubted last night, should have been left on his plate! He has not felt well all day. But we did make it to the orphanage on time, and accompanied Tanya to her track meet. First, when walking in the door, Dima was coming down the stairs. He saw me and ran, then JUMPED totally up into my arms. I did not bend down at all! He leapt all the way up for his hug.

The ride to the track meet was in a 9 passenger VW van-but there were 11 of us! On the way home, there was an extra passenger, so 12! The weather was beautiful leaving Ivankiv, cool, but sunny and the promise of warm air. An hour later, in Kyiv, it was cloudy, with a definite nip in the air. The track meet was in some woods just inside the Kyiv city limits-at least I think we saw a "city limits" type of sign. They had a path roped off for the runners, basically in a circle, seemed to be about ½ kilometer in length. Tanya ran twice around in her race, and I think she ran 1 Km, so that makes sense. The path they ran on was full of tree roots, small, ankle twisting pine cones, and occasionally some glass. We walked the path before the races began. I watched for the glass and removed whatever I saw. A large "radio" truck arrived with 4 large speakers mounted on top, and someone inside announcing racers names and numbers. We never did hear Tanya's name.

Of course, right before she was due to run, it started to rain. Not hard, but just enough that it was downright cold out there! Makes you appreciate basketball, with the indoor court, complete with bathrooms when necessary! We arrived at the place about 11:15 am, she was due to run at 1:10. That stretched to about 1:45. (Have you ever known a sports event to run on time?) She just ran in that one race.

OK, Julie, I now how your mind works! You want to know if she won! No, she didn't come in first. She was definitely the smallest one out there in her age group (I think they were separated by ages). She came in in the last ½. But she gave it all she had, and ran hard the entire way. It was very much fun, for those couple of minutes, watching Tanya run, which was obvious that she enjoyed doing.

Back in the van to Ivankiv, and Jim came back to the hotel. I took Tanya back to the orphanage, then told her we needed to go to the market to get fruit and lemonade. Tanya, Dima and I walked to the market. This "market" is the size of about ¼ of a 7-11! WE bought 70 bananas (yes, that is right, seventy bananas, there are 65 or 66 kids in the orphanage and we wanted to get everyone one, plus one for me, for Jim, any caregivers, etc…) and all of the oranges they had-I think 24. Carried those back, and I was expecting Tanya to take them to the kitchen. No, she immediately took them upstairs to the large music room, yelling all the way something about bananas. In one big whhoossshhhh, the room started filling up with kids, all going immediately to chairs lining the walls, waiting dutifully on the chairs for their banana. Tanya and Dima so much enjoyed handing each child a banana, proudly telling them these were from THEIR mama and papa. You have never seen children so happy to get a piece of fruit. Then, came the oranges. Tanya handed one to every 2 children, and there was enough-not everyone got to the room. The leftover bananas, along with a yogurt I had gotten for Tanya and Dima to share, and I think there were one or two oranges, were taken to Tanya's room, where she locked them in her locker. We are talking lock and key! First, she got one for herself and a 2nd one for Dima, plus one for me. Then we walked back to the market for lemonade and candy. Lemonade is not our lemonade; it is more of a sprite, soda type of thing. We bought 12 2-liter bottles, and a bag of hard candies, enough for each child to have 2 small hard candies tomorrow. Then, I spotted the Kindereggs. If you have never watched a child with a Kinderegg, you are really missing something.

They are egg size and shape, a hollow chocolate egg, with a small toy inside. We have seen them in Western Europe and our kids at home always love them-ok so do we!
I told Tanya to ask how many they had, and they had 66. Well, I’m pretty sure there are under 66 children there, so I bought the entire stock of them! I hope we have enough Ukrainian money for our meals until banks open again!
I told Tanya those treats were for Easter tomorrow, and she understood. We took everything back, and she locked it in her locker, hiding the lemonade under her bed. Then we walked back to the hotel to bring Jim a banana. He was still not feeling well, so Tanya, Dima and I ate at the restaurant downstairs. After 2 bananas, Dima still had room for a big bowl of chicken/egg salad, and a large amount of his French fries. I don’t think his appetite is the cause of his size! He probably just is too picky of an eater to gain weight with the diet at the orphanage. For us, he has eaten very well!

Took the kids home, and then I came back for an early bedtime. Spending all day outside tires me out. Jim’s tummy is still not better, so it will probably be a long night for him.

Tomorrow is Easter. I still have to get my phrase book out and go downstairs to the desk to find out what time Easter Liturgy is, and then I can go to bed.

Monday is a holiday in Ukraine-the Monday after Easter, so if the markets are open, we will take the kids to get some clothes. Tuesday they see the doctor here, but that is not the exam needed by our embassy. I think they need this one before the court date. We are hoping for an end of the week court date-maybe Thursday??? I hope so.

Sometime soon, if Jim is feeling better, he may take the mini-bus/van that goes from Ivankiv to Kyiv to visit an Internet café and upload all of these updates.

Happy Easter! (more...)

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