Category Archives: Things that make a difference

Hajo to His Excellency

The outgoing Ambassador of the United States to the Republic of Armenia gets what it’s like to be a volunteer. After treating four of us to breakfast in Goris in April, Richard Mills and his wife Leigh Carter had to … Continue reading

Posted in Ambassador Richard M Mills Jr., America, Armenia, armenia’s revolution, Cross-cultural understanding, Damian Gorman, Diplomacy, friendship, Hanna Huntley, National Poetry Recitation Contest, Peace Corps Armenia, Poet In Residence, Summer camp, Things that gladden the heart, Things that make a difference | Leave a comment

Twin Peaks

Heavy lifting. It’s what bras are for, and all of mine in Armenia had proved unequal to the task. Of the six I brought with me from home , one had pinched from the get-go, two had lost a wire … Continue reading

Posted in Ararat, Armenia, Beauty, Blessings, bras, clothes, Cross-cultural understanding, Design, Embarrassment, fashion, friendship, gratitude, Khor Virap, Mount Ararat, Peace Corps Armenia, personal failings, shopping, Social niceties, Things that gladden the heart, Things that make a difference, travel, Underwear, visitors, Women | Leave a comment

Northern Ireland and Armenia: bordering on —well, what?

Above all else, politicians and peace-builders in Northern Ireland — not two completely overlapping groups— know that people find it hard to change. It is 20 years since the Good Friday agreement and many stumbling blocks to lasting peace and … Continue reading

Posted in America, Armenia, Belfast, Borders, Caucausus, Cross-cultural understanding, fear, Learning, life lessons, Millisle, Nagorno-Karabakh, National pride, Northern Ireland, Peace Corps, Peace Corps Armenia, Terrorism, Things that make a difference, travel, velvet revolution, war, Women | 3 Comments

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

When World’s Collide

I am back home in Goris and enjoying a perfect dinner of Irish Wheaten bread with Armenian butter, salad, and cheese. The bread comes from Knott’s Bakery in Newtownards a no-nonsense town just outside Belfast, Northern Ireland. The tomatoes probably … Continue reading

Posted in Armenia, Cooking, Cross-cultural understanding, Food, friendship, gratitude, identity, Ireland, Local delicacies, Millisle, Northern Ireland, Nostalgia, online friends, packing, shopping, Things that gladden the heart, Things that make a difference, travel, Village life, Women | Leave a comment

Leaving Armenia the hard way

I was booking my international flight by credit card when my friend called. He was planning some travel of his own. “We have the chance to visit Switzerland” he said, excited “Christoph asked us to come” Christoph once visited Goris … Continue reading

Posted in Armenia, Cross-cultural understanding, Driving, Schengen visa, Things that make a difference, travel, Travel to Switzerland | 2 Comments

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