Archive for November 17, 2009

Sweet Seamstress and One Bedeviled Bus Driver

About a month ago I bought a purple silk scarf from an Uzbek dealer at a craft bazaar, about $10 a meter. I bought two meters.  However, it was unfinished and needed a seamstress quickly before it frayed anymore than it had already.  I’m glad one of my teaching colleagues recommended a seamstress in the underpass by our university.  I took the scarf to her and she charged about 200 tenge for doing about 5 minutes worth of work.  I paid her 300 ($2) and am pleased with the results. 

I’ve been too busy with student papers, office hours, team meetings, Photo contest entries, collecting books for the Charity Bazaar this upcoming Saturday to even THINK about going to the Green Bazaar to buy new buttons for my winter coat that I bought at a second hand store several months ago.  It will get done eventually but right now I’m pleased with how inexpensively one can live in Almaty once you get passed the high rent prices and expensive airfares.

Had another incident on the bus last night.  I have some VERY strong words about drivers who think their cargo is fair game for immediate, indiscriminate stops.  I’m convinced they look in their rearview mirrors to see which passengers are not gripping the bars tightly enough.  Just at the last stop when I was bracing to give up my 50 tenge coin, the bus lurched to a full stop and I flew forward 2-3 meters, still standing upright almost next to the driver.  He thought it was funny, the conductor collecting the coins thought it was hilarious too. 

I don’t understand Russian but I could tell what an older woman was muttering to me who got off the bus after me.  She doesn’t dare get up from her seat until the bus has come to a complete stop.  Yes, I’ll heed that lesson for next time since I don’t want to be found sprawling on the bus floor as I saw another woman do because of some of these dedeviled bus drivers.

Now I need to find an inexpensive haircut somewhere in Almaty. One who doesn’t take fiendish glee in cutting too much hair off in this cold, winter season. Any suggestions?

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