Saturday, September 26, 2009


(This actually took place last September…found it in the archives!)

People often ask us, "What does a typical day look like for you?" I never know how to answer, because typical days don't really exist!

Let's look at yesterday, for example.

Here's what I expected the day to look like…

Morning: go to Korce to make arrangements with new apartment landlord and run other Korce errands.
Mid afternoon: swing by a birthday party just long enough to make a polite appearance.
Afternoon/evening: pack pack pack up the house for the upcoming move.

Here's what actually happened...

The owner called and canceled our appointment. Kind of a bummer but not really a problem. We had the morning free to watch cartoons, listen to a sermon, drink coffee and enjoy a relaxing Saturday morning.

At around noon, a youth from the church called to tell us she needed money for the party immediately. Steve left to go the church, and I got to packing up the house. About an hour later, Steve called to tell me the party had been bumped up an hour and that I needed to get to the church ASAP.

I was dressed to do grungy work around the house, t-shirt and jeans. So certain was I that I would be back to house packing soon, I didn't even bother to put on real shoes...I just slipped on my shopka (Albanian house shoes...ONLY worn in the house and appropriate for going to the corner store. NOT TO BE WORN at public functions.)

I got to the church to find, what was supposed to be just a small cocktail party, had turned into a full blown BBQ (which now obligated us to stay for the rest of the afternoon) The BBQ led into a round of Mafia, and one round of Mafia turned into 3 rounds of Mafia. Finally, around 8:30 pm, people FINALLY started to head home. One of the girls asked if I'd escort her. Naturally, I agreed. Thinking that she lived directly across the street, I didn't even bother to tell Steve where I was going because I knew I'd be back in a flash.


She lived about 10 minutes away, and once I got her to her door, she and her mother INSISTED I join them in the upstairs apartment to see a bride celebrating her wedding. They promised, just 5 minutes (Now, I have lived long enough in this country to know that 5 minutes DOES NOT ACTUALLY mean 5 minutes!! Shame on me for falling for THAT trick!!) Next thing I knew, I was (still dressed in my house-packing-scrubbies and shopka, mind you) dancing traditional Albanian “vale” around a tiny room with beautifully dressed strangers and posing for pictures with the bride (I didn’t even know her or her family...but they had to document the foreigner at their wedding!!!)

Wanting to escape the madness, I tried calling Steve to pick me up, because now it was late enough that I needed an escort home. Much to my chagrin, his phone had died. I was stuck at the wedding until he could get home, charge his phone, call me to figure out where I was, and then make the 15 minute walk to pick me up.

I'll spare you the rest of the details, but I finally got home around 11 p.m. Needless to say, my day did not turn out as planned...I guess that's what I get for wearing my shopka out of the house!


Katie said...

o bo bo (and i'm doing the cheek thing hehe)

Jamie and James said...

Love it! I want a pic of you with the bride. I'm totally picturing you dancing in your shopka (terlik here). It's awesome because we have the same shoes for the same purposes and I can just feel your pain at ending up dancing with a bride while wearing them. Awesome story!!