Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Adopted holidays, teaching, and LITHUANIAN PIZZA!

Today was a glorious day!

Started off by sleeping in, which is always a glorious idea when you're jet lagged/on Russian medication. We also arose from our slumber to discover that today is May Day!! Personally, I think the idea of May Day would probably be alot more exciting if I knew what it actually was.  The only connection I have for May Day are mental images of smallish children dancing in a circle around a pole whilst holding ribbons.  Why this is significant or where this occassion occurs, I've no idea.  However, Lithuanians apparently think it's exciting, because school was closed for the children!

But not us. We're not Lithuanian.  And we still got to teach!

It's actually kind of nice it was a holiday, because very few children came, and we had it easy on our first full day.  Wahoo for strange adopted ribbon holidays!

One of the ever-so-lovely trees outside the school :)

The school!!! This is the building that houses all grades ages 5-18!  Notice all the BIG windows - this entire school is run by natural light.  There are some lights, but I've never seen them turned on. 

These are hilarious. These gates are strategically placed in each hallway to keep the crazy kids contained :)

Half of our room! Once again - notice the huge windows? 

The supply room! This is where we keep all our supplies for the classes (which are crafts, shop, gym, drama, kitchen, and games)
 Overall, the kids were great today!! Couple little stinkers here and there (as well as a young-love-triangle!!  That cute girl's breaking hearts at age 6) but overall, I'm coming to love these kids already :) It's interesting to see the difference between the lives these kids know, and the one my siblings know back home.  For example, the school is pretty dark (no lights, remember?) and poorly stocked.  No toilet paper or soap in any of the bathrooms (which really are almost pitch black since you can't really have windows in there) for the kids.  When the kids have trouble getting to the bathroom in time (which actually happens fairly recently) there's nothing you can do when you don't even have toilet paper to help them.  When that happened to one of our cute girls today, there was nothing I could really do except hug her, and help her not feel humiliated.  It's hard to see.

On the plus side, these kids are simply happy.  They have smiles on, love the games we provide, and especially the prizes they get :)

After we got done teaching our batch of youngin's, we were all starving since our sweet Kindergarten cafeteria ladies weren't open today.  Bailey, Elise, Janese and I all decided to head over to get pizza at Charlie's.  Now.  Charlie's is quite a joyful place - it's a restaurant down the street from our apartment, themed after none other than this chap:

Folks, Charlie Chaplin himself.
It's actually pretty hilarious - in the middle of Lithuania, eating pizza in a Charlie Chaplin themed restaurant with Justin Beiber playing.  I almost forgot I was in Europe until some strange Russian man came up and started getting mad at Bailey for wearing one of those Russian fur hats.  We're not entirely sure why he was angry, or even exactly what he was saying, but he seem placated once I apologized in English.

On the plus side, the food was amazing :)

Elise and Janese modeling the Charlie Choplin look along with our glorious menu

All of us enjoying our delicious pizzas! (From left: Janese, Bailey and Hillary)
Okay. This was amazing.  Some kind of glorious caramel wrapped in sweet pizza dough, drizzled with fudge and topped with mint and vanilla ice cream. Oh my. 
Overall, I love European food. There seems to be less preservatives/sugar in everything, and you can actually taste the difference.  In my opinion, it's WAY better. Delicious.

Can you understand why today was such a glorious day?

P.S. Moral of the blog post - be grateful for light bulbs and toilet paper. Not everyone has them, even when you're in a nicer country.


  1. Hahaha I would like to add a little thing to your grateful list. Due to recent events, one should always be grateful for a flushing toilet ;)