Saturday morning was rough. The cognac surely made my head swell because it hurt. It was a lazy morning and we watched about 5 episodes of dexter (chris burned me the first 4 seasons to keep busy). We went out for pizza and groceries. Cindy wanted to make me some food to make sure I would be ok after she left.
Henry came and we saw Cindy to the train Saturday evening. She was in a sleeper car and had a ticket for 1 bed. She was hoping to have the car to herself but apparently no such luck. From what little she has shared I understand her bunk mate was an older Ukrainian gentleman sporting Dill scented cologne. Nice.
Cindy spent the next day in Kiev then caught her flight this morning at 7. She arrives in San Diego at 9 pm.
I started into some semblance of a routine Sunday with a jog around the track (a soccer field across from the apartment complex) then met Vitaly for lunch. Yep, it was pizza. After wards he showed me an outdoor market that we had never come across. It is huge and I am looking forward to spending an afternoon there.
Henry had been talking about meeting up for drinks since out last trip. With Cindy gone he invited me out Sunday afternoon. He parked the car and we walked to the billiard bar. There they had these tables that are bigger than anything else I have ever played on. Apparently it is Russian billiards. The balls are larger than normal and the pockets are just big enough to fit a ball into. The real interesting part is that you can use any ball as the cue ball and sink any ball on the table you’d like. The object of the game is first one to sink 7 balls wins. Sounds easy. It wasn’t. Each game took an hour and I managed to win all 3 games. The best strategy is to hit all the balls as hard as you can and hope one goes in. Sloppy pool counts!
Henry ordered 2 beers (huge beers) and a bottle of vodka. No problem, I will only do a few shots right? Wrong. After we polished the vodka and beers it was off to the grocery store for more beer and more vodka. I was already in trouble at this point. We went to Henry’s apartment and I met his wife, Oyla. She was nice enough to make us a spread of lard slices and boiled shrimp to go with the beer and vodka. The lard looked especially appetizing last night. This morning my memory of last nights celebration has hazy enough that I thankfully couldn’t fully remember how much lard and shrimp I really ate. I made a pact with myself today – no more shots.
I finally made it out at 10 am for some pizza. It helped my condition enough. The plan was for Henry to pick me up at noon so I could visit Ruslan. After calling a few times to postpone he finally picked me up at 5:30. I have learned patience here and just went with the flow.
Ruslan was happy to see me and gave me a big hug. I brought some of the clothes and sporting goods we lugged from san diego to the orphanage and the boys were happy to see some fresh entertainment. We went across the street for some gum with his friends andthen I left. I told Ruslan I would be back in a few days and asked if he wanted to come stay for a night. He said absolutely. The problem is that he was so bored over the Christmas break staying with us in the apartment. I would rather he not get too bored right now since we will have plenty of time for that coming up soon. It’s best for him to spend some of his last days here with his close friends whom he will not see for a long time, if ever again.