I can’t believe it’s already been three months since I arrived in Armenia at the end of April. Technically I only have a month left before I have to get on the return flight I booked back to LA — but I can’t imagine getting on that airplane on August 17. Whether I can extend or not remains to be seen, but I’ve grown so much by living somewhere that’s so different from America, and I’d love to continue to explore all the emotions that come with it.
When I first arrived, I felt like I was in a wondeful dream that you don’t want to wake up from. Everything that seemed to bother others didn’t annoy me. My dentist picking up his cell while working on my teeth? Strange, but no problem. My Zumba teacher doing the same while dancing? Great multitasker. The waiters taking forever to bring the check? Hey, at least customer service has improved over the years. No such thing as toilet seat covers? It’s all good, I’ll just use toilet paper.
For the most part, I still don’t allow those little things to ruin my day — it’s a slippery slope if you do — but I’ve definitely woken up from my dream and am much more realistic. I still find charm in the less structured way things are done here, but I definitely get more annoyed than before — and voice my frustration like locals do by saying “lav eleeeee.” The other day I said it when our bus driver was making phone call after phone call while driving, like he was lounging on his couch in the living room.
Now it’s summertime and the city is full of life (and tourists). There’s never a dull day, much less moment, and there’s always something happening. At a moment’s notice a regular Monday (or Tuesday or Wednesday) turns into what feels like Saturday night. It’s fun but can be exhausting, too. My hope is to experience Armenia in the Fall, as I’ve heard it’s one of the most beautiful times of the year — as they say here, “kaprenk oo ktesnenk” (we’ll live and we’ll see).