And by home I mean my site. It really does feel like home; when I’m away I find myself missing it, and when I’m here I don’t want to leave. Even in the summer, when on some days I barely leave my apartment, I feel connected to my community just being here.
Here are some highlights of hanging out in Sniatyn in the summer:
- Writing with the beautiful, real fountain pen I got from my 6A class for my birthday. I find myself making up reasons to write lists. Thanks to my dear friend Emma for giving me a fountain pen tutorial via video chat!
- Free produce. Need I say more? In just one week home I scored pounds of fruits & vegetables from Iryna, my landlady, and even my apple man at the bazaar (who now sells cherries). I look forward to the Wednesday bazaar every week, excited to see what’s fresh & new.
- Concocting new recipes with said fresh produce.
- Helping Iryna with weeding and picking fruit in her garden. Bonuses include staying for dinner and helping make (and eat!) sour cherry pie.
- My English and sport clubs. Numbers are small, but I have core groups of attendees who liven up my lazy summer days. My running club may turn into a Frisbee club, as I introduced it last week and they love it! (If you have any Frisbee game recommendations, send them my way.)
- Random encounters with my pupils and others while strolling through town. The other day I was walking home and Natalia, one of my 3rd-formers, ran across the street to give me a hug; we had a short conversation in Ukrainian and off she ran again.
- Running in the mornings when it’s quiet and cool.
Alas, I’m off traveling again tomorrow for almost two weeks — healthy lifestyles camp & then visiting my host parents. I’m excited but can’t wait to come back home to Sniatyn to continue enjoying the long summer days.