Friday, April 29, 2005


my host mom, tsovinar 

I've finally arrived in Yerevan after a great couple of weeks traveling to Greece and Istanbul. My flight for Yerevan left from Istanbul at 1:45 AM. Checking baggage was an experience in and of itself. Since the border with Turkey is closed, many small Armenian business owners fly their goods into Armenia. The women in front of me had 7 large, full suitcases. And somehow I was charged $15 because my bags were too heavy. I'm not afraid of flying, but I was terrified considering how much luggage was going onto this plane.

Miraculously, we arrived safely to Zvartnots International Airport. Passport control gave me an extremely hard time. I am not completely sure as to why, but it was the last thing I wanted to deal with. I thought I was set having an -ian in my last name, but apparently not. I had to show my tickets back to the states and two forms of photo identification. Four different controllers looked at my passport over a 20 minute period.

Two volunteers from AVC were waiting at the airport to pick me up and I was quite relieved to see the sign bearing my name. They took me directly to my homestay where I met my host mom, Tsovinar and my host brother, Tigran. They both seem great and they speak enough English that we are able to communicate.

I met with the director of AVC this afternoon to discuss my volunteer placement. There are so many options, but I will meet with the two original organizations (Apricot and FMS) on Monday afternoon to see where I'd like to work.

Tomorrow we head to Ijevan, a small town northeast of Yerevan. I'll be posting pictures when I find an Internet cafe that allows me to use my laptop with their connection.If anyone would like a postcard, please send me an email with your address at


Blogger Hakob Gevorgian said...

They were suspicious about your last name. Casabian, which originaly is Ghasabian, where Ghasab in Turkish means a Butcher. So be aware, the big brother is watching you Mr. Butcher :)

Would you [diasporans] please stop acting like bureaucrats? At least I know what Armenians in abroad are up to.

9:22 AM  

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