Thursday, October 18, 2007

There is more than one way to peel a potato!

I hope these words find everyone well and good! The fall is just about over, here in the village, there is a heavy frost every morning as a make my way to school. The knit hat is out, the winter jacket is being worn and there is a fire in my wood burning stove every night. Luckily, the sun shines all the time here or so it has for the last 2 or 3 weeks, which makes the bitter temps a little more bearable. I am a bit concerned as it is only the middle of October and winter is on the doorstep...what are November, December, January, February and March going to be like? I have to take a moment and give much love and respect to anyone who has been a teacher, is a teacher or will become a is very difficult. Each day presents new and difficult challenges and just when you think your lesson is going they way you want it to, Ion in the back of the class is releasing a paper airplane from his hand on a straight line for Oana's head, some things are universal I guess. As the seasons have been changing so does the food, work and lifestyle in the village. I have never eaten so many potatoes in my life, trust me I am not complaining but I never knew there were so many ways to prepare potatoes...fried, baked, mashed, in soup, grated etc. Everyone is in a hurry to get all the fields cut and the grass up on a feeding posts, but you will not find that many people roaming around outside before 7:30 a.m. now-a-days...until the sun starts to warm things up and melt away the early mornings frost there is not much that can get accomplished. Also, with the days getting shorter you will hear the hooves of the horses and the wooden wheels of the carts being pulled, coming back from the fields not much later than 5:00 p.m. It is guaranteed that a walk outside as the sunsets will fill your nose with a refreshing scent of wood burning fires. I never knew how good food tastes when cooked on a wood burning stove, even tea and coffee have a much more natural flavor than if prepared on a gas stove..who knew? The family I stay with is done with there field work for the year, so I have been spending my free time chopping wood for the winter and helping other families bring in their crops. Also, with a bit more free time on my hands I have been working on reading "Don Quixote"...100 pages down and 800 more to go, but so far it has lived up to its hype... and playing a lot of guitar. My hair has grown considerably since I arrived in Romania in May and is finally serving a purpose keeping my ears warm on those brisk walks to school in the morning.

Peace & Love - Alexandru :)