well today was weird…not that most days in ukraine, in all honesty, aren’t weird as it is. not only did i see a spotted cow (i don’t think i’ve ever seen one in ukraine before) AND a skateboarder (also don’t think i’ve ever seen one in ukraine before) but things are actually moving forward on my world map project at school!!
i should go knock on some wood before i curse myself. projects in ukraine can be rather frustrating to complete. americans like to go about things quickly and focus on proficiency while ukrainians often take their time and do things last minute. sometimes very last minute. which is enough to drive any american out of sorts. things just work differently here.
i’ve been working on having a world map project at my school for quite some time now. it’s a popular project pcvs around the world have done, one that i helped with at another school, and something that as an art major and map obsessor, is right up my alley. my counterpart and i began talking about this last semester — where to have it, what it will look like, who will help, how much will it cost, etc. after much debating we decided on an outdoor location, a location that due to the changing weather, meant things had to get going. and fast.
after a few weeks of no answers to my questions, i knew time was ticking so my americanized project management skills went into full force and i took things into my own hands. i went to the maintenance men at school to ask about what i needed and where to buy it. succeeding to do it all in ukrussian made me pretty proud, regardless of my certain gramatical errors and pantomiming. i priced (somewhat vaguely) the materials, wrote out a project timeline (one that probably won’t mean much in the country that taught me to be flexible), and handed it all to the school director.
i was hoping to begin this week, today in fact, as it shows on my silly timeline. but things happen. my counterpart didn’t want to get the supplies with me over the weekend since it was a holiday (teacher’s day) and we didn’t go today, BUT i was promised we’d go tomorrow. the maintenance men assured me they’d prepare the wall tomorrow so that we can begin and i got a few half-hearted ‘maaaaaybe i’ll help’ from my students. bribing must be done. homemade cookies must be baked.