As I write this, everyone is one hour and fourteen minutes away from landing in New York City...
Cheburashka is off to America!
That's "Good bye" in Russian, but literally translates into "Until the Next Meeting." It's not forever. And today's "good bye" is far from permanent!
Everyone headed to the airport this morning, miraculously awake, bathed, dressed, and packed. The only glitch is the missing bag of painted Russian pins and carved wooden boxes that Cecelia bought for her girlfriends... It somehow disappeared amidst our chaos. I called the places we went after buying those items to see if they had been left behind, but they didn't have them... I can easily go get some more, though... PLEASE let me, Cecilia.
The girls cried and cried as the cabs drove away... I'm glad I got a colleague to cover my first two classes today so I could still be at home then... They were devastated that my mom left and they were so sad their friends wouldn't be back here "soon." Um, that's an understatement. They still don't "get it" that people don't just "pop over" to Moscow for play dates...
We're already thinking of how to meet up with everyone at Cecilia's house in upstate NY this summer, though... The kids truly got along SO WELL.
I'm running on empty... Towards the end of the morning at work, when I was already dreaming of leaving the very second classes ended so I could SLEEP before taking over "Mommy" duties later on, I found out there was a very important faculty meeting I had to attend... One related to my earlier post about my job... Thank goodness I'd forced myself to be awake enough to put on a nice skirt, heels and professional top/jewelry today! I also had to stay after work to evaluate a candidate we are considering for a Spanish position. I only got home from work/picking up Katya at 7:45 p.m.! (She had play rehearsal after school that went late).
I'm so glad that everyone came to visit. Yes, I'm EXHAUSTED, but so happy everyone came. Natalia is kind-of falling apart in her behavior as a result of the over-stimulation and sleep-deprivation and she is extremely trying. Poor girl, poor me... But then again, what did I expect? All in all, the kids were all VERY amenable to the grueling schedule we had them on in order to see/do all that we did!
There is SO much to blog about! We truly crammed in much more than you'd think could be done in 3 1/2 days...
Just for fun... Here's a video about the stuffed animal that you can see driving away in the taxi above. He's "Cheburashka," a beloved animal from a VERY famous children's cartoon/music. I actually did some translation for the creator of him (a famous children's writer) in 1991 and I know him... Natalia's first word in Russian, "пока", (bye), was spoken to him on New Year's Even in 2004! Katya P. loves Cheburashka, so Natalia gave her a stuffed Cheburashka she doesn't play with anymore (and a dvd).