Category Archives: family

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

Tayto take Armenia

I was posting a present for my sister when the lady in the post office said she had parcels for me. Not one parcel, but two.  I was surprised. Sure, my birthday is tomorrow but I had not anticipated any … Continue reading

Posted in Armenia, Blessings, Emilia Simonian, family, Food, food safety, Fundraising, gratitude, joy, Local delicacies, Northern Ireland, Serendipity, Tandragee, Tayto, Things that gladden the heart, Things that make a difference, travel, welcome | 2 Comments

The real thing: not sugar that looks like salt

“Your stories matter” said the poet. “They are how you make yourself known to others. They are a way of stretching out your hand to someone else.” Damian says that the mistake most newbie poets make is that they feel … Continue reading

Posted in Armenia, Armenian writers, creative writing, Cross-cultural understanding, Damian Gorman, family, Hanna Huntley, know thyself, Learning, life lessons, love of words, National pride, Poet In Residence, Poetry, public speaking, story-telling, Summer camp, Teaching, Things that gladden the heart, Things that make a difference, travel, Writing, Writing Workshop, young women, Youth | 2 Comments

Visitors

Yesterday was Merelotz in Armenia— the day when people go to graveyards to honor their dead. Merelotz happens several times a year– always on the Monday after a big public holiday. (Last week we celebrated Constitution day). Offices are closed … Continue reading

Posted in Apostolic church, Armenia, Cross-cultural understanding, death, family, friendship, gratitude, grieving, Hanna Huntley, Happiness, life lessons, Mother/daughter dynamic, pagan ritual, Peace Corps Armenia, Sisters, Things that gladden the heart, Things that make a difference, travel, visitors | Leave a comment

What kind of woman are you?

 Armine who works at SOSE sat beside me and translated in a whisper. My toddler Armenian meant I couldn’t say much and anyway a loud-mouthed American braying in her own language wasn’t really what was wanted. But the discussion about … Continue reading

Posted in America, Armenia, family, fashion, feminism, life lessons, sexism, Weddings, Women, work, young women | 2 Comments