|Students on first day at Dilijan State College, September, 1, 2012|
|Children entering local school on September 1, 2012|
|New English classroom, Dilijan State College: no flooring or furniture yet on first day of school, September 1, 2012|
DRIVING: I miss having a car, or maybe it’s just the convenience of driving when and where I choose that I really miss. As a Peace Corps volunteer, we are not allowed to drive while in country and here in Dilijan, Armenia, we at least have reliable public transportation. I still miss driving in a country where women do not usually drive except in larger towns and cities. Recently, it took me 2 avtobus rides, 2 –hour and ½ marschutka rides and 2 short taxi rides to attend a Peer Support Network meeting and return home the same day. It is 102 KMs or about 63 miles in distance to Yerevan where the Peace Corps office is located. That’s not bad when some of our volunteers live as far away as 7-8 hours necessitating a 2 –night stay out of their site just to attend a meeting or tend a few items of business. I still miss driving a car.
ARMENIAN DUMP DOGS: The garbage dump puppies we saw as babies early in the spring are now gangly teen –aged dogs who still rummage in the neighborhood uncovered dumpster for food. They compete with the cats and the neighborhood cows for sustenance. The puppies look amazingly robust and they are friendly, unlike other stray dogs or ones tied up with a mere 3 feet of rope from which they bark and guard their owner’s property. I wish we could take these puppies to our apartment but we must turn my head and try NOT to make friends with them. We do take them scraps when we have them. I fear for these dogs when winter comes.
Cat in bottom of garbage can, looking for food; dogs eat on the outside.....