Category Archives: family

The Two-Soup Day

Yesterday was a two-soup sort of day. Snow on the ground, frost in the trees, and a bone-chilling fog which hung around damply. The first bowl of soup was offered upstairs–part of my family’s desperate mission to expose me to … Continue reading

Posted in Armenia, Armenian food, aveluk, breakfast, Cooking, Cross-cultural understanding, family, Food, friendship, Garlic, Goris, gratitude, Great weekends, Local delicacies, National Poetry Recitation Contest, Things that gladden the heart, travel, Village life, Winter | Leave a comment

Even the monks have iphones now: a return visit to Bangkok

Soi 18. Sukhumvit 36. An unremarkable Bangkok alley that we came to believe was the magical creation of Thailand’s Lewis Carroll or CS Lewis. We’d booked a couple of nights in the Rembrandt Hotel to give our spines the chance to … Continue reading

Posted in Armenia, Bangkok, cocktails, Cooking, Cross-cultural understanding, drinking, eating out, family, fashion, Food, Local delicacies, Mother/daughter dynamic, New Year, packing, shopping, Thailand, Things that gladden the heart, Things that make a difference, travel, Vacation spots, young women | Leave a comment

Unkissable this Christmas

It isn’t every vegetarian who willingly accepts an invitation to a Khash breakfast. Khash is a bone marrow broth made with cow’s feet. The feet soaked for twelve hours in a large basin in my kitchen, and then were added … Continue reading

Posted in Armenia, Armenian Khash, breakfast, Cross-cultural understanding, eating out, family, Food, Great weekends, travel, Village life, Vodka | 1 Comment

Of Hope and Hot Water Bottles.

The twenty-somethings in the room honestly had no idea what it was. Grant pulled the owl-patterned, flannel cover away from the neck of the hot water bottle and showed its rubbery lips, and the brass thread for its plastic stopper. … Continue reading

Posted in American holidays, Armenia, Christmas, cocktails, Cooking, Cross-cultural understanding, drinking, family, Food, Great weekends, Homemade decorations, hot water bottle, joy, Local delicacies, New Year, Peace Corps Armenia, Syunik Marz, Things that gladden the heart, Things that make a difference, travel, Village life, Vodka | Leave a comment

A Hykakhan Thanksgiving

I was doing ok until Star mentioned mac’n’cheese with ham, part of her Thanksgiving dinner. All I could taste was the longing. Then she said, with just the faintest hint of accusation, ” If you were home we’d have all … Continue reading

Posted in American holidays, apricots, Armenia, Blessings, Cooking, Cross-cultural understanding, family, Food, gratitude, Happiness, kindness, Local delicacies, Thanksgiving, Things that gladden the heart, Things that make a difference, Village life, welcome | Leave a comment

Between a rock and a charred place.

Nane and her mother Knarik are tiny and perfect. They remind me of dolls who  dance on the top of music boxes, except they wear jeans and leather jackets.  Not the type for tutus, they wouldn’t thank you for satin … Continue reading

Posted in Advice, Armenia, Arson, clothes, Corruption, Cross-cultural understanding, family, fashion, Go Fund Me, kindness, Peace Corps, Peace Corps Armenia, shopping, Things that make a difference, Village life | Leave a comment

Our happy, homogenous town

Conversation One. “This is our American volunteer– her name is Liz” “Come in Come in (hugs). Pleased to meet you. What will you have to eat?” “We ate” “But you’ll have something? Chai? Coffee?” “Tea would be nice but don’t … Continue reading

Posted in Armenia, Bullying, Christianity, Cross-cultural understanding, equality, family, friendship, gay rights, Human rights, identity, Learning, Safety, Syunik Marz, Village life, welcome | Leave a comment