Friday, February 29, 2008

Well I was born in a small town. Or: And I live in a really, really freaking small town.

Hello there, friends. It has been a week since I've mosied by. And what a week it was! I have been in the capital, Tbilisi, since last Friday, engaging in meetings, trainings, and other such shenanigans. I will be preparing a lengthy entry on these events, because they were...eventful. But, for now, to sate you, I will simply share one thing that just happened to me:

I had to go to the pharmacy, just now, because on my way back from the capital yesterday, I picked up an enormous bag I had (which was full of, by then, clean laundry, since I spent a night engaging in washing machine use at an expat's house...more details to come on how scarily excited I was about this), and apparently I did it wrong, and I wrecked my back. So, today I called the doctor, and she told me to go to the pharmacy, where I was to call her, so she could give the pharmacist instructions on my care (believe it or not, my stunning Georgian is not yet stunning enough to say, "I need 100mg tablets of your strongest painkillers, because I have strained my back muscles"). When I was at the pharmacy, hoping that the doctor was telling the pharmacist, "He needs Russian vicodin. Lots of it. Stat," the wheelchair-bound proprietor of the establishment looked at me. I do not know this man. It took me a few seconds to realize that I sometimes pass him in the street. We have never spoken, and if he's ever looked at me in a more than glancing manner, I haven't noticed it. He asked me a question. One would think that this question would be a normal, "Who are you?", or even, "Do you like Chokhatauri?", which is a question I get from people who know who I am but don't know me. Here, instead, was his question:

"Why did you shave your beard?"

I shaved my beard last week, in Tbilisi. I am, apparently, so famous that even the pharmacy manager knows my facial hair status at all times. Next time, I'll go in there for some more Vicodin, and he'll say, "I liked the sweater you were wearing yesterday better."

Small towns, friends. Small towns.

More tomorrow (the usual disclaimer about how this might be an absolute lie).

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