Change is in the Wind

1998 > Russia

Like Bart Simpson said ‘A cold northeast wind is blowing’

My crew, from the left: me, Gulya, Olga, Erik (in back), Tamara, and Misha.
The Staff & Partners Crew

I saw her one night in a dream and I've been looking for her ever since

Seen in a dream once…
As a Simpson’s fan back home, I can remember a scene where
Bart was looking at an approaching storm and the change it would bring.
He said,’ A cold Northeast wind is blowing” as his hair
danced (well, wiggled) in the wind. Today, as I look out my window at
the trees dancing in the cool Northeast wind, I am reminded of that
scene, for change is in the wind.

I am writing this at 9 pm, about 10 minutes after getting home from
work. These days 12 hour days are no stranger to me anymore, 8 to 8 (or
8 to 9 like today), Monday to Friday being normal now. Nothing like the
Peace Corps experience I originally planned on having. I am changing
into a workaholic, like my cousin-in-law, Matt, busting ass to get

On Friday, the man who is my manager, actually who used to be my
manager and is now only in name, is leaving. I will be the new manager.
The man in charge of the expat payroll and the entire staff account
process for 300 expats and 1500 staff accounts (before our merger with
Coopers & Lybrand). I am a little shocked at the responsibility I now
possess, much more than I ever had before, and more than I would have in
the States. I hope I can do my conscience right, and be at least
competent at my new tasks.

One of the other people leaving in June told me about a maid she
employs. I am about to give up on house-training Arthur, and hire her to
pick up after his mess in the common area. This is an odd step for me. I
am used to running a hose quite efficiently, as my housemates in DC
learned fast. I am pretty clean (thanks again, mom) and I like to keep a
clean house, but Arthur is a little different. In case he reads this
some day, lets just say he has a different outlook on tidiness, and I
can’t seem to convince him otherwise. Maybe his mother’s impending visit
on Sunday will motivate him.

Unfortunately, the young lady I was spending time with ended her
visit to Moscow last week. Claire, a spicy English woman who was
teaching English in a Moscow suburb, packed her bags and headed to Lake
Bikal. She is spending two weeks there, soaking up the nature it has to
offer, before returning to Moscow and immediately leaving for England. I
already miss her and I am contemplating a hiatus from the dating scene
until something decent comes along again.

I am also contemplating quitting my Russian lessons. I know, I know,
I live in Russia, I should be learning he language, but, but, but… There are so many reasons, time, work, energy, patience, etc, which make
me want to duck out on the whole scene. I am learning new words, albeit
at two or three a week, and I do have good listening comprehension, but
I am so drained or busy by 6 pm, that I have canceled the last three of
five opportunities to study!

Tonight I should feel energized to study, the weather finally changed
(from a heat wave of 30+ C to a cool 15 C) and the sun is still shining
(we are so far north it will not set at all around the solstice in late
June), but after I finish this page and the bottle of beer I’m drinking,
I am going to relax in the hot tub.