Interviews, Ubuntu, Awards, and Paintings

Peace Corps / Friday, October 19th, 2012

The past couple days have been weird in the best of ways. Everything that’s happened seems to have ended up as a welcome surprise.

As you know, I was eagerly waiting for Ubuntu 12.10 to drop yesterday (ask Lyuda who was here for tutoring and she’ll confirm that I kept checking every 15 minutes for the update). I was waiting around all day for it and I finally had a chance to install it at 9 pm local time.

However, right before it appeared on my computer and in the middle of tutoring, I received a phone call from an unknown number. I check with Lyuda to make sure she didn’t mind me answering before picking up. Long story short, I have a phone interview later today and I’m pretty excited to have the opportunity. It also shows that my strategy of applying for jobs two months before you can begin pays off because it takes time for employers to review all the applications and then to begin the interview and hiring process. Wish me luck.

Then today was a special day at school. One of the English teachers, Igor, was awarded the highest award a teacher can receive in Ukraine. There was a presentation ceremony along with entertainment honoring Igor. It was a great experience that I’m happy to say I got to be a part of, even if most of it was spoken in Ukrainian and I had a lot of trouble understanding the details.

Finally, today one of the 9th grade students showed me the finished painting he was working on last week. We had discussed it while waiting to see the director and I mentioned that I’d like to see it, if possible when complete. It was beautifully done using a technique I haven’t seen before where you dye silk. I spoke as much praise as I could because I think his efforts deserved it. He’s also the only one of my students at my school who has expressed an interest in continuing art studies in college.

Later that day, while I was sitting in the teacher’s room forgetting where I needed to be, he asked me to come speak with him in the hallway. He wanted to know when I’d be leaving Konotop and I told him. Then he asked if I’d like a painting from him. I happily agreed. No one has offered to paint me anything before. He asked for a subject and I vaguely said, “Something that will remind me of Ukraine.” We’ll see how he interprets that.

Now I’m off to prepare for my interview.

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