"My soul is elsewhere, I'm sure of that. And I intend to end up there." -- Rumi

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Keeping myself entertained, Georgian-style

I got invited to another Georgian wedding!

This one was held at the reception hall my host family owns, and was done up very prettily with everything silver and white.  I went with my Nana and Rezzo and had a great time.  Ton of yummy food stacked multiple plates high, pitchers of wine, bottles of vodka, live band, dancing, and Georgian men following me around.  Yep, sounds like a typically awesome Georgian wedding to me. :)

I'm in black, next to the pillar.
Host Mom, feeling no pain. :)
 I danced a fair bit at this wedding... someone first asked me to dance when they played Johnny Be Good, and if there is one thing I am sure of, I have it in my blood to dance to Johnny Be Good better than anyone else in that room. :)  I had a lot of fun... even if towards the end of the night I had to firmly rebuff one of my Georgian beaus who apparently thought that us dancing a few meant that we would be engaged soon.

Very soon after that, Nata knocked on my door late one morning to tell me that friends were visiting and that they would like to meet me.  I heart impromptu Georgian supras!  So of course I headed straight down and broke my fast with homemade Georgian wine and khachapuri.

Nana and Eldari with their visitors.
And then last Thursday, one of my students from last year, Deana, invited me to her birthday supra!  She was turning 14, I think, but that didn't stop the pitchers of wine from coming out.  I had a great time partying with these kids!  (And of course never forgot myself or my position as Responsible Teacher Figure.) :D

Georgian birthday candles are not for the timid.
Unfortunately, I had to leave after only two hours because I'd recently gotten a short-term tutoring job, working with a young couple, Bacho and Nino, whose family owns a shop around the corner from my house.  So I showed up for my 8:00 tutoring session... but instead walked in on my second birthday supra of the day, this time for Bacho's younger brother who was turning 23.  Needless to say, there was no tutoring that night!

Bacho toasting his brother with the birthday qanci.
Birthday Boy.  See what I mean about the candles!?
 Much toasting... much less eating (I had NOT expected this and was completely stuffed from Deana's!), some dancing and lots of laughing.  Pretty sure last Thursday was Georgia in a nutshell.  Loved it.

And then today, as I was walking in the house after school and tutoring, Izo called me around to where the dudes were pressing this year's grape harvest for wine!

A machine to crush up the grapes before the actual pressing.
This is one of those things I have really looked forward to seeing.  They didn't let me down either... I'm pretty sure this Georgian homemade wine process has not changed in 300 years.  Possibly longer.  And possibly they are still using the same pieces of equipment. :)

The pressing itself was over really fast.  The juice was poured into giant glass jugs, and I'm not sure what the next step is.  Seems a little simplistic that they just seal them and let nature do its thing for the next ten months, but I guess I will have to wait and see.

Apparently they use this grape mush to make their chacha, which I think I have previously described as Georgian moonshine.  Stuff will make you blind.

... and then, I got invited to my FOURTH Georgian Wedding!

Tamada, toasting the couple
Host Dad , being awesome
This guy was belting out "Go Down Moses".  For some reason.
 As always, I had a wonderful time.  The impressive singing gentleman, above, took me under his wing for the whole evening, danced with me, made his friends dance with me, filled my plate with more food than I could eat in a week... it was fantastic.

This weekend, if the weather cooperates, Julie, Mark and I will be taking a short trip to Borjomi National Park.  We're hoping to see it before cold weather makes this utterly impossible, and believe me -- cold weather is setting in FAST.  So wish us luck.  You know I'll keep you posted.


  1. Any snow falling around there yet? Or not yet in the lower altitudes?

  2. Not yet! It was pretty cold up in the mountians, but it's warm in Poti today.