Friday, June 6, 2008


Zamorochki is a Russian word which hardly can be translated into English. It can mean "difficulties", "uncertainties" and "a number of little problems that require your immediate attention all at once." I woke up in the morning with a definite sensation of "zamorochki" in the air. A number of important tasks had to be worked on. As I was sure that there was no way I would be able to accomplish all of them, I began experiencing severe anxiety to as which tasks I should be giving my attention to.
This situation where I have to pick just a few projects or tasks for the day has a debilitating effect on me. I want to be able to do it all, and don't have the slightest clue how to jam it all in one day, and may end up doing absolutely nothing. Hence zamorochki.
Let me share the things that I didn't do. I didn't pick up my mail at the Westpost office. I didn't get the most marvelous haircut that was supposed to transform me into a gorgeous model. I didn't get to fold my clean clothes that have been piling up on my top bunk for the last two months. Every time I look at the pile I say word of apologies to my wonderful skirts and shirts. I know one day it will be nicely folded and put away. Ahhh.....
I didn't write a few very important emails. I didn't even open the books that I'm trying to read.
The evening did not emerge in the quiet sense of satisfaction and accomplishment. Throughout the whole day I had a feeling that I had to be doing something else.

Yet, here are the things that did happen. Now, I'm wishing I could do it over, so that I would take time to enjoy each instance thoughtfully, as now it is clear that these were the things that were pleasing to the Lord.

I did interview a girl who would be working as interpreter with the Valley Christian team. What a divine appointment. It's so relaxing and joyful to meet a person who has great communication skills, wonderful command of English and is anxious to work. Ahh.....I was elated. Not to say, Zhenya is a student at my Alma Mater which inflates me with a good bit of pride. So, far, two best interpreters that I worked with were the students of the Department of Foreign Languages and Cross-cultural Communication of LETI.

I did have a phone conversation with the director of Camp Gorizont. As I'm still in the process of searching for the right camp for the Valley team, I anticipate each conversation with a camp director wondering if it will bring new opportunities.
But, apparently, I had the right camp for some time yet felt that I needed to keep looking. As someone said, "What if it's great, but not as great as something greater." I'm not sure it makes sense to anyone else but me.
The director of Gorizont was upbeat and very interested in our cooperation...but in mid-June (the team I'm coordinating is arriving in mid-June) they are hosting a team of Australians.
It's quite possible that we will be working with this camp in the future, and I will make a trip to look at the camp, but for now, it's not that camp that will be hosting our team.
There were no burning bushes, no trumpets and firework, but it became rather clear that our team should work at Uni Stroitel.

And, I did get to help one of our interpreters (who lives in Ukraine) to get registered in St. Petersburg. The whole Russian system that requires foreigners to register their presence in this country is rather obscure and annoying. I do enjoy the blessing of being a rightful real estate (a.k.a small urban apartment :) owner in this city which gives me close to absolute powers in the area of registration. Again and again, it proves to be a great deal of help to my various friends and colleagues that are not burdened by the citizenship in this country.
My heart is at peace knowing that Misha has proper registration documents and will not be hassled by militsia and other nefarious characters pertaining to the law-enforcing system of St. Petersburg.
The most complicated step in the whole process was walking to the central post office in downtown (and back). My poor injured foot didn't want to cooperate sending painful signals into my central neural system. I had to stop a few times to ward off tears, but then my sense of responsibility pushed me forward. After all, I was rewarded with the sense of accomplishment and peace and the most charming evening in the downtown of St. Petersburg.

I haven't anticipated it, but trying to put some of the events on paper enveloped me with the sense of the day well, I'm wondering, why did I have to fight through my day of zamorochki after all?


  1. Zamorochki in the air! That's an interesting (and scary) concept.

  2. If you Google "Uni Stroitel," yours and my blogs are in the results list. :)