Tuesday, September 26, 2006


How blessed I am to live in such a beautiful city!!! Granted, I hardly ever see this view, but wherever I am, the sunsets are always breathtaking.

On Sunday, I had the privilege of celebrating Iftar (breaking the Ramadan fast) with some friends. There was a lot of excitement building up to Ramadan and I really had a blast with them . It was an honor and a really special thing to experience. I did what everyone else did and from sunup to sundown, and fasted from food and water. It was surprisingly easy, except when we broke the fast, there was no water to drink. I was super thirsty! I did get to drink some apricot juice though. (Sidenote: I can finally stomach tap water!)

Here I am crushing nuts for dessert. I had a metal stake and smushed it around in the bowl over and over again. The peanuts crushed super easy, but the almonds were a challenge!

Here I am preparing our "break-fast." They always break their fast with a date, so we had dates and bananas in sweetened milk. It was okay, but not something I would want to drink everyday.

This is just an idea of all the food we ate. I don't remember the names of most of it, but we a lasagna type macaroni, pickeled veggies, a sort of slimy spinach soup, bean soup, duck, chicken, rice, and bread. For dessert we had pancakes fried with nuts (the ones I crushed!) and a stringy sweet dough also with the nuts I crushed. Over and over again, I heard "Sarah, eat! Eat! Eat!" My reply was, "Don't you know that your stomach shrinks after you fast? I can't eat anymore!" Nevertheless, I left stuffed.

You know, a lot of people have said to me, "Wow! You're living so far from home and I could never do what you do. It would be so hard!" After having been here for awhile, I would say to any of those people, "It's worth it!!!. Yes, I miss my friends and family, but I
get to experience life and people and culture in ways the others will never, ever get to. There are hard parts, but I don't regret moving here at all."

This is not how I expected my life to turn out. It's better than I could have ever imagined!


Lesli said...

Wow- good pics. And I also think your green pants are super cute. :) The food looks heavy- is it mostly fried? Is it family style, like there are 6 dishes and you share them all?

Most would call Russian food, "the Russian diet" - haha. I would believe them. Oatmeal/cream of wheat for brkfst, soup and main dish, such as noodles with a little meat for lunch, and more soup for dinner. Soup, soup, soup. I really enjoy Russian soups- potatoes, beets, etc. Your spinach soup sounds good too. Yum. :)

Liana said...

i'm so proud of you for learning to stomach water! it'll be so good for you!

Liana said...

i want to come cook with you!