Life on the Mekong and Other Rivers

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this blog, including strong statements in support of weinerdog-riding monkeys, are our own, and not those of the U.S. Department of State or the U.S. government.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

The Weekend

Friday after work we hosted a party for the Consular Section. June 13 was the last day of our very, VERY busy season, and we are now settling down into the merely busy season. The ratcheting down is because we came to the end of the annual Summer Work and Travel season. This is a program that provides 'exchange visitor' visas to college students from around the world who have the requisite English-language skills, so they can spend the summer learning about America by working at a New Jersey Turnpike rest stop McDonalds, Six Flags, the boardwalk at Ocean City, Maryland, or one of the many summer camps that dot our fair land.

It's a popular program in Ukraine, and adds considerably to our visa load for about 4 months leading up to the summer.

And now it's done. So we decided to celebrate.

Katherine had told me that I could sleep in Saturday, so I was really looking forward to that. Then she decided to get her hair cut first thing Saturday morning, so I was up, and sad, earlier than I had planned.

Later that afternoon, we drove about 30KM south of Kyiv to what is (I can only hope ironically) called the Blue Lagoon. A dirty lake that some enterprising Ukrainian dumped sand next to to create a beach-like atmosphere. Who needs the beaches of Thailand when you have the blue lagoon? If I were in charge of marketing for the place, I would tout the fact that AT LEAST 65% of the beach is NOT covered in cigarette butts.

Granted, I may not have gotten the full magic of the place, because 10 minutes after arriving, putting down our blankets and sitting down, the heavens opened up and god cried...hard. I told Jack it was probably because of something he did.

We made it into the car just before the rain really came down, and drove back to the city in a downpour that rivalled anything we saw in rainy-season Laos. Dozens of cars pulled over to the side of the road to wait it out, such was the lack of visibility.

But we didn't. Instead, we missed our exit and had to circle around on unfamiliar roads until we found our way again. Luckily, by this time the rain had let up, allowing us to sort of see what we were doing.

We returned to the city and continued our picnic in our friends' living room while the clouds cleared and the sun re-emerged.

This morning Katherine and Jack went to meet friends for an early brunch, then to the park while I DID sleep in. And it was nice.

The rest of the day was uneventful. Lots of dancing, stacking things then knocking them down, jumping on the couch, reading Ferdinand the Bull 4 or 5 times, and generally running around in diapers and a t-shirt.

Jack did stuff too.


At 3:54 PM, Anonymous wendy p said...

This blog used to be about beer.

At 5:47 PM, Blogger Katherine and Phil said...

Would it make you feel better if the reason I was sad on Saturday morning is that I drank lots of beer on Friday night?

At 7:41 PM, Blogger BergerandDeFries said...

Agreed~ I miss the beer updates!


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