Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Women vs Men

American women have fought so hard for independence and equality with men, and I think in doing so they have hurt themselves. After visiting several countries, I’ve noticed that we don’t have it so good as American women. I think that we have fought so hard to be equal that it’s affecting our relationships with men. In Russia, women are revered and they are valued, not just for their beauty, but also because they are more fragile and need protection from the evil of this world. Women are treasured.

Julie and I attended a women’s conference a few months ago and we got the biggest kick out of our friends. Most of these ladies are young married women, and when it came time to setup the room and move some pews around, and setup two tables, the women immediately started going through a list of men to call to help them move the pews and setup tables. I know of several women’s organizations in America that when something needs to be setup for a women’s event, the ladies themselves pull out the tables from storage and set them up, and they move around the pews or chairs all by themselves. Julie and I started laughing because we were used to moving things and we could have easily lifted the pews, moved them around, and setup the two tables. In America, we would have done so without stopping to think of what man to call to come move them. Our friends ended up not having to call anyone because two men from the church were dropping off their wives and we asked them to help. As Julie and I watched the men move the pews and setup the tables and I realized that they appreciated being helpful and useful to us. They liked solving our problems and being the man, being whom God made them to be, the helper and provider.

That night got me to thinking about how in America we miss out on so many opportunities as women to validate men and to appreciate them. It doesn’t have to be to call them up and ask them to setup a room for a women’s event, it’s the little things. We don’t appreciate them enough when they hold open doors for us and or give up a chair for us. It’s not often in America that this happens and yes it doesn’t always happen here in Russia, but I see it more, and I like it. I like being valued as a woman, just because I’m a woman. I like having someone offer their seat for me, or hold open a door for me. I like it when they offer to open that five-gallon bottle of water and I let them, even though I could have done it myself.

I can’t help but think of how much this would help marriages, let the man be the man and the woman be the woman. No more demanding for equality, they are stronger than us, let them be. Ladies sit back, enjoy being a woman, and appreciate the men you have in your life.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Walkin' On Water..okay technically it’s ice

Life in the Far East isn’t really hard, but it is harder to live out here. Often we have to go to two stores and a market to buy food or ingredients for daily life. Then what you buy you have to carry home. I’ve gotten used to the whole, how heavy is this now, and will I be able to walk home with it? Oh and with the ice it just makes things even lovelier! In a few places, the ice is very very thick.

In November, one day it got right around 33 degrees F and the ice started to melt and it was wonderful because I thought the ice would go away, oh boy was I wrong. Within a few hours, the temperature dropped and everything started freezing again. So what was slowly melting and was sorta a mushy/slushy material all of a sudden became hard frozen ice. In many places, I would say the ice is about 6 inches deep.

I’ve gotten pretty good with walking on ice, and I’ve slipped twice, once I did this little half fall and the second time I took someone down with me. It was my Russian friend Inna, and we both laughed, but after standing up and walking a distance we realized our legs hurt. But not because they were bruised from the fall, but because they were cold. It was New Years, I was being very Russian, and I decided to wear boots, black tights, a dress, and then a long sleeve black shirt underneath. All I had over the dress was my long Russian coat, scarf, hat, and gloves. Inna had on a very similar outfit and when we fell on the early New Years day morning, our poor barely covered legs got the worst of the fall. We got up and started inching our way to the car and all of a sudden, our legs felt like razors were slicing our legs, all over. You see, when our legs came into such close contact with the ice, that thin little layer of tights didn’t really do a good job of keeping our legs warm. But I did warm up soon when I finally made it to the car,but even when I got home twenty minutes later, my legs were still cold!

(these photos are from New Years)

Friday, January 8, 2010

Ice, Ice, and More Ice

It’s been awhile since I’ve posted on here and that’s because I’ve not had the internet in my apartment! However, I now have internet, and I’ve had it now for like two weeks but I’ve been busy catching up to facebook messages, and thanking everyone for their nice wishes for a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and also I’ve just been lazy!

I had a friend of mine who is American but studying in Tallinn, Estonia come stay with us for about two weeks during Christmas, and it was good to have her here , but we didn’t really get out and do much. I’ll bet your wondering “Why?”. Well, the answer is that it was freezing cold and when the wind blew it felt like it was cutting into our skin. It was cold when the wind wasn’t blowing, but then it got worse when the wind was! The wind chill was often in the negative teens with gusts about twenty miles per hour. On two various days, Shera and I got out of the apartment to venture into the cold to do a little sightseeing and we got no further than our bus stop and after waiting 15 minutes for a bus gave up and came inside. It was miserably cold and not typical days for a sightseeing trip. Now things are a little better outside, and we are not having such cold weather, but it’s still a lot colder than what this Texas girl is used to! I do not believe it has been over 32 degrees F for the past month. The other day it was around 27 degrees F and I thought it was a beautiful warm day. Crazy huh?

(This video is from one night when our friend Shera was in town and we were playing Zilch with some friends)


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