It's been a while since I've posted. Our internet is slow here Yekaterinburg and then Utel did an upgrade which threw the whole thing off. I was blaming my problems on Russian internet connections, but thanks to our neighbor and some testing and head scratching, I finally tried replacing the Ethernet cables on the whole system and that seems to have solved a large part of our problems. It's still slow, but soooo much better! It's so frustrating to stare at your screen hoping that the page will load or message will send and it go nowhere. On July 1st, our internet plan gets upgraded and fingers crossed it will be even better! YEAH!!!! My outlook is so much better here with working internet!
Many of you have asked what life is like in Yekaterinburg. It's much smaller than Moscow which is nice and challenging. No pushing and shoving on the Metro, but not so many social options in such a small town. Work keeps me occupied, and we've started to make some good connections. Believe it or not, my friend Marni from High School in Baton Rouge went to college with Emily who is the ACCEL Regional Director in Yekaterinburg and Novosbirsk. (She's in the Shashlik pictures!)
We celebrated summer solstice on Saturday with new friends Stina and George from the Park Inn and visiting colleagues from Moscow. The light is amazing at this time of year--the sky doesn't get fully dark for more than an hour. It sets around 10:30 or close to 11 and starts coming up again around 3:30. Not sure that bodes well for December!
I am just back from several trips. We arrived here on April 21st. Then I headed back to Moscow for the Fulbright Community College Collaboration meeting followed by a trip to St. Petersburg with my friend Karen. Fantastic weekend--loved St. Petes! Once our internet is upgraded, I'll put the pictures up and my recomendations.
Here's a piece from today's NY Times on Tomsk. Tristan visited there and met with students at the American Center. It really is beautiful. We'll try to put those pictures up as well!
Hope you are well!
A Fresh Take on a 19th-Century Gingerbread Village
By CLIFFORD J. LEVY
Published: June 25, 2008
Nikolai Zakotnov vowed to rescue Tomsk and help the city defend an architectural heritage that is as charming as it is unexpected.