‘What does love look like? It has the hands to help others. It has the feet to hasten to the poor and needy. It has eyes to see misery and want. It has the ears to hear the sighs and sorrows of men …… That is what love looks like.’ - St. Augustine

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

And Now For Something Completely Different

I'm grumpy. Whiny.  Extremely irritable. You are glad you are not in my proximity right now. It's that awful pre-flu feeling where your body tells you it has had enough. It is giving in to whatever germs have found their way into your system. The tiny germ-troops are marching in...you can feel them. Ugh.

I hate getting sick.

I am out of airborne and vitamin C (Anya ate them all). I am out of aleve and tylenol ( Nastia finished them off this week.) I have nothing left to fight off this inevitable misery but orange juice. Of course I was nearly perfectly healthy for NINE WEEKS. And what happens when I run out of safe, reliable American drugs? I get sick.

I hate getting sick!!!

So I am going to go to bed early and think healthy thoughts and imagine I am breathing healthy air, and do my best to fight this with the little stamina I have left.

So, rather than bore you with a list of all my aches and pains and flu-ey symptoms, I'll share a few photos from this week. I accidentally took the trolley to work instead of the bus the other day (wasn't looking up to see that it was attached to the wires overhead. Who misses that???) so...the #15 trolley does not follow the same route as the #15 bus. So I had to walk a good mile from where it left me to the school. Took a few photos on the way. Here they are:

First spotted -- the requisite old woman picking through the dumpster....
I know the photo is far off and a bit blurry -- I don't own a zoom lens -- but this is  a sight I see every day but I have yet to get used to it. But there are also things to brighten your day here, like this cool graffiti! I love driving by this every day. But the unplanned 'walk' by it was even better:

Here is a photo of the typical  apartment housing found in Kemerovo. You can ride miles on the bus and see hundreds of buildings just like this one -- one after another. These are the nice homes. This particular building overlooks the school where I work. There is always a blind woman in front of it (other side) when I arrive. She walks with a cane in one hand and feels the wall of the building with the other. She walks back and forth like that every day. Getting her exercise I guess.

But then I arrive at the school and see something like this,  and it is the best view of all:


  1. Hope you're feeling better soon!

    Check out the stuff at the local pharmacies. Read the labels closely. Its possible to find stuff there that is American made by such companies as AstraZenaca or Bristol-Meyers. We were able to find stuff like throat lozenges and vitamins and even some good antibiotics, etc. even in our remote Ukrainian village. Granted, the selection wasn't fantastic, but at least there was some stuff.

  2. Sorry that you are not feeling well. I take 2,000 mg of C & 6,000 mg of D every day and honestly I cannot remember when I was sick. I would hate to think I ran out of either of them. Wish I could help but we are in two different worlds.

  3. Tell yourself it is NOT going to happen. You are NOT getting sick. That has worked for me in the past. That and prayer. And hot and sour soup + rest.

    Those are Ivanovo apartments, too. And Moscow apartments. I wish I had one.

  4. Anonymous1:48 PM

    I am so sorry you're getting sick! I hope it doesn't last!

  5. Eat some onions... lots of good stuff in them for fending off colds. Alaskans swear by them.

  6. i really hope the boxes arrive soon. there is vitamin C and aleve in there... hopefully just enough to get you through. i'd send more but you're coming home before boxes will reach you!

    hang in there. i love the photos of the area. you know how much i love that kind of photography...

  7. Can I legally send you OTC's? If so, email me and I will get What you need mailed that day.

  8. Gargling with salt water can help if it's a cold. I hope you won't be under the weather long. I hear that many people in Eastern Europe swear by badger grease capsules for respiratory ailments, but I hope you won't have to resort to that!

  9. Anonymous8:26 PM

    Go to the APTEKA and ask for "ee-boo-pro-fee-nah" (ibuprofen). They'll know what it is--it really saved me in Ust-Kamenogorsk when I got bronchitis from the terrible pollution and harsh winter. We will be praying for a quick recovery.

    - The Gaines family

  10. Oh, I am so sorry you are sick. And you mentioned on fb snow is coming too! Snow is beautiful--but no fun to trudge through when you are sick! : (

    Can you get your vitamin C in any of your veggies? I just googled it at the site linked below, and it looks like there are some things that are high in vitamin C that you might be able to get your hands on, like onion (who knew?) and green cabbage, potato and rutabegas. . . if you find any of them, try to make yourself a salad with them, as the C will be quickly cooked out. And don't forget the healing powers of raw garlic! Is that available?

    And homemade broth--from your previous posts, it seems like soup broth might be something easy to find. : )

    Oh, I am praying for you!


  11. I love the photo's.I google different countries and find the greatest pictures. Thanks for sharing.

  12. Thank you everyone! I do have an onion here (yuck) and THANK YOU Steve for telling me what to ask for at the Apteka! ( Pharmacy, for you non-Russian readers...lol). I slept deep and long so that helped. I am going to have hot tea right now, take my liquid vitamin D, and head to the Apteka:)

  13. Do they have raw garlic? I'm most concerned that you might develop a lung infection and need an antibiotic (well, you *know* that would happen to me!) and then what? Raw garlic is good, as is anything that keeps your nose running and eyes watering (I usually make a pepper-y fish chowder with onions, but I dunno what you'll have available there.) Steam inhalation to help keep your lungs clear works, too. I sure hope you feel better soon!!!

  14. Hope you get better soon.

    I have so enjoyed your posts Keri. Thanks for your honesty and glimpse into Russian life.


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