So I would like to report that Russia, on April 23rd 2011, has finally decided to recognize that it is no longer winter and that it is in fact time for spring!
Yesterday me and all of the exchange students in Uglich decided to go out for a walk and take in a movie at the movie theater in our town and when I walked out side I almost fell down in shock that I saw and felt two things that I had not seen or felt in a very long time. They were… dun dun dun… the sun and HEAT!! Yes I walked outside in my fall/spring jacket, a skirt and a light sweater and scarf and I was actually hot. By the time that I got to Jenia’s house I was hot and ready to take off my coat!! This was a completely foreign feeling for me because I haven’t gone outside without a coat since August!
By the time we were walking home we had all taken off our coats and were walking in just our sweaters which let me tell you was sooo nice because after months and months of being bundled up its nice to finally just be able to let go and walk outside without wearing 10 million layers of clothing!
Another thing that I have noticed is that now that the sun is out and that it’s starting to get warmer everyone’s moral and mood is way up! While yes its only 2 days into the warmth but you notice people on the street seem happier and I know that I’m happier now that the sun is out and that in general its warm again! Its no longer a burden to go outside any more and you don’t have to start getting ready like 20 minutes in advance just to step outside. I never realized how much the weather could change peoples attitude but I really do think that by not having sun and it just in general being a lot colder then it ever needs to be in life it made people a lot more reserved and sad then they normally are. So I’m really looking forward to spring, which as finally started to arrive! Now all I have to do is to hope that Russia doesn’t decide that it wants more winter! Lets hope that SPRING IS HERE TO STAY!!
SO another big milestone that I’ve reached is well, today is Easter!! Yes its Easter already! Honestly I cant believe that its already April 24th but hey its here! So Russia’s celebration of Easter, from what I’ve seen so far isn’t too in depth, mostly just a day to hang out with family and chill but here is what we have done so far.
So when I woke up we all had breakfast as a family, which is something that we never do so it was nice to all, sit down together. And my family wore their Wisconsin shirts so that was really sweet of them cause they all wore them for me because it was a holiday (pictures coming soon). We had this special Easter bread along with our eggs. Yes in Easter they color eggs too but it’s more of a thing the parents do rather then an activity for the kids. But they don’t hide them here what they do instead is they each take a hard boiled egg in their hands and they hit them together with another person and the person whose egg doesn’t crack is the winner! I’m not sure about the tradition or the meaning behind this but it was a lot of fun. My little host brother, who is 3, insisted that we keep playing until he won against every single person in our family!
So far that Is all that we have done for Easter, after that we’ve just been hanging, doing homework, and just chilling watching movies but it has been really nice to just chill with the family.
I am really feeling very comfortable with my family. They truly do feel like my family, which is something that I’m very grateful for because having a good host family really does make or break an exchange and I'm really grateful for them that they have decided to host me and that they have truly made me apart of their family. I am really going to miss them when I leave in just 2 months.
That brings me to my next little bit of news. Afs has officially sent us our tickets (or rather the plan) for our return. We have found out that we will be leaving Russia on June 27th 2011. Honestly this makes the whole end of my trip seem a lot more real because when I think about it in just 3 short days I will only have 2 more months here. Its really really hard to believe that I’ve been here for 8 months already!! In fact I can’t believe it! It doesn’t feel like it should already be over but in fact on May first I will start my last full month in Russia!
I have very mixed feelings about leaving. On one hand I’m very ready to see my real family and friends again and to start my life as a high school graduate! It only took me 5 years and 3 countries! But there is the part of me that is starting to get attached to Russia and my family. I am starting to enjoy my time here more and more and I know that I’m going to be very sad to leave this place and these people. But it is a consolation that I know that I’ll be back here eventually because as of right now the plan is for me to study Russian in college so I should be able to come back! I’m very excited to see my family but I also realize that I’m really going to miss everyone here and all of the friends that I’ve made here.
I don’t know if I’ve told everyone on here (but I'm sure my mom has done a pretty good job at getting the news out) but I am an official student in the Beloit College class of 2015! I know that my original plan was to go to Italy for university but since I’ve been here I’ve realized how important my family is to me and I realized that the dream and the idea of going to university in another country is a lot harder then the reality of it. When it came down to making the decision I realized that I didn’t want to have a Skype relationship with my family for the next 4 years and only see them on Christmas and in the summer. I didn’t want to miss all the birthdays and the graduations that I would have missed if I left. OS while yes Italy will always have a huge part in my heart its just not the right time for me to leave my family almost permanently for the next 4 to 5 years. I know that I will still study abroad whilst I'm at Beloit college but that’s just 1 years as apposed to 4 full years. This was a really hard decision for me to come to but once I made it I have been very happy with it ever since. So Beloit here I come!
Uhm, I don’t know what else I have to update on here but mostly I’d like to say that I miss and love you all and I hope everyone had a great Easter and ill see you in just 2 short months!!