There's Something about Mary

Stories and thoughts about my time as a Peace Corps volunteer in Moldova

To my Fathers

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With this Sunday being Fathers Day, I thought I would post about the fathers in my life.  The three fathers in my life are my 2 host dads that I have met in the last year and then, most importantly my dad back in Washington.

Let’s start with my host dad in Riscani:  He is a very quiet man, and our conversations are very limited.  I think most of this is because his primary language Russian, so we usually come to stopping points in our conversations because we can’t understand each other.  Both of my host parents in Riscani remind me a lot of my grandparents in North Dakota.  My grandpa in ND is not a very loud man, and because his hearing is bad, my grandma explains a lot to him.  My host dad can hear just fine, but he does have trouble speaking Romanian to me, so when I tell my host mom something, she explains it to him in Russian, he gives her his response, and then she translates his Russian back to me in Romanian.  It makes for an interesting dinner conversation.  A couple weeks back my host mom went to Bulgaria for a week, and I was able to prepare food for myself for the week.  Every night he would come in and ask if I had eaten, and if I was cold.  He is a very hard working man, he gets up early, and doesn’t stop working until the sun goes down.  Below is one of my favorite pictures of him, taken on his 75th birthday last year (Christmas day).  Moldovans aren’t known to smile often, so it is great when you can capture it.

My other host father lives in Ciorescu.  He has a son my age who lives in Italy and a 17-year-old daughter.  At first we didn’t communicate much, probably because my language was so bad, but as I got better we got to know each other better.  My entire host family in Ciorescu knows that I enjoy beer, and every time I have gone back to visit, they have beer for me. We have bonded over drinking beer, and on several occasions the two of us have finished offa 2-liter of beer in one night.  During the rainy summer mornings he would drive me to school and in November before my vacation he drove me to the train station and waited till my train departed before driving home.  My host mom in Ciorescu has told me how he asks how is “american fată” is (American daughter) when I have not called for a few weeks.

And last but certainly not least, my dad in America.  Oh, how I miss my dad.  He is always telling a joke, and loves to tease anyone, especially my sister, my mom and I.  I remember when I was younger I use to get so upset about it, and realized much later on that if I didn’t react to him, he would stop.  If I would have figured that earlier, my teenage years would have probably been a lot easier.  My sister has his sense of humor, and I like to push peoples buttons like he does.  Never was a good idea when we use to push each others buttons.  My mom says that we are a like in that way, and I was never good at backing down.  After graduating college and moving back home we were able to get along better than when I was in high school.  Even though there were some tough times, I have never doubted how much he loves me, and know that he will be there to support me in the decisions I make.  He can make an awesome breakfast too 🙂  Hope you have an awesome day Dad, and drink some good beer for me!

It is great feeling to feel loved by not only your family in America, but also the people I have come to live with in Moldova.  I know I have said this before, but I am so blessed to not only have one great host family, but two!

Happy Fathers Day to all the Fathers out there!!

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Author: Mary O

Hi, I'm Mary. I am orignally from Spokane Wash., where I lived for 20 years of my life. I went to school in Bellingham Wash, at Western Washington University and graduated with a degree in Business Administration. In June 2011, I moved to Moldova for the Peace Corps. In the Peace Corps, I am an Agribusiness and Rural Development Volunteer, and live in a town called Riscani, which is about 3 hours northwest of the capital city. I love Moldova, but there are somedays where I really miss all my friends and family in the States! Email me if you have more questions!

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