It’s Jen and Tina here. We are driving in Poland right now on our way back to Slovakia. I (Tina) got to Slovakia about a week ago. My first week has been a lot of fun, and I feel like I’m adjusting quickly to the culture and being on a new team and things like that. Jen and my teammates have been teaching me a lot of words and phrases, but I still can’t really communicate with people who don’t know any English…so we end up playing a lot of charades. I love that game :-)
Jen wants everyone to know that she is so happy I am here (I didn’t make that up). She says that it’s nice to be able to split the cost of gas :-) But I know that it's really just cuz she just missed me!
We go to the grocery store pretty much every day which we both enjoy. We have been eating very healthy meals (chicken, spinach salad, omelets, protein shakes…but those of you who know us well know that we still make room for our candy – peanut butter M&Ms, licorice, Milka, ice cream)!!!
Jen moved into the apartment about a week before I got there (and of course she took the better bedroom!) Don’t worry, I will show you pictures :-) Our apartment is nice. It is big, has a nice kitchen, hardwood floors, and a good heater (which is very important because it’s getting cold here in a hurry). I’m kind of a clean freak so I have spent a lot of time wiping everything down with Lysol wipes. I have had to stop doing that for a little bit though because we discovered a more pressing issue. Our apartment is infested with daddy long legs! Ok…maybe not infested, but there are cobwebs in pretty much every corner. It’s kind of ridiculous really….just when we think we have found all of them, we look up at the ceiling and find a new one. Luckily though, daddy long legs are probably the only bug that I’m not scared of so I’m in charge of killing them when we find them. In a few more days I think we will have the problem entirely taken care of!!! I just hope they don’t come back :-)
We have a washing machine, but up until a few days ago it was broken. A repair man came over a couple nights ago to fix it, and that was a hilarious experience. Two men came and neither spoke a bit of English so as you can probably guess, we had difficulty communicating. We finally pulled out a translation book that a friend had given to Jen, but could only find phrases like, “Where do we pitch our tent?” or “Where can I get a part time job?” or “Can I rent a car for two weeks?” We were dying laughing. The good news, though, is that our washer finally got fixed!!! Drying our clothes is a whole different story. Our contract said that we would have a dryer, so of course, being American, we were picturing a washer/dryer together. Not the case. Our “dryer” is basically like a combination of an ironing board and a clothesline. The first time we went to fold our dried clothes, they were as stiff as a board. Then we smelled them, and oh wow! It was like we hadn’t even washed them. We asked a teammate if there was a secret or something to washing/drying the clothes but she said no. We bought some fabric softener and are hoping that maybe that will be the key…we will see.
The basketball part of everything is a learning experience. Our coaches don’t speak English, but most of our teammates speak at least a little bit so they translate for us. It is great playing with Jen again…we have a lot of fun together. We find ourselves doing a lot of pick and rolls and just really looking for each other on offense. Our teammates are great though…very sweet girls who have made us feel welcome here. As Yulka, one of my teammates, says “Super!!!”
Here are some of the words/phrases we have learned:
Ako sa máš? = How are you?
Potraviny = food store
Dobré ráno = good morning
Prepáč = sorry, excuse me
Prosím = please, ok, excuse me, etc. (this word has a lot of meanings)
Ďakujem = thank you
Ako sa voláš? = What’s your name?
Well, just wanted to update you on our experiences over here. We will try to be more consistent with writing and posting pictures! Hope you are all doing great!!!!!!!!
Until next time,
Jen & Tina
"For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully commmitted to Him." -2 Chronicles 16:9
Oh, and we just wanted to say, Liz, we know you’re reading this…hang in there! :-) Coach Vicky, hang in there, too!! :-)
Copy and paste this link to see some pictures: