Monday, May 09, 2005

Independence Day

Monday was Independence Day and there was a big celebration in Shushi. The president was within arms length of all of us, without any sort of bodyguard or secret service. In the afternoon, we further explored Shushi and saw destroyed Turkish baths and old universities, and the English center that the two AVC volunteers set up. It is quite impressive. Shushi was once considered one of the cultural centers of the Caucasus during the early 20th century. At that time, it had a population of more than 40,000 people. It has since been reduced to less than 3,000. Shushi has struggled since independence because it has been designated a red zone rather than a green zone, and hence is unable to receive aid from organizations like the World Bank or USAID.

We spent Monday evening at the two volunteers’ apartment in Shushi. It is really a fun, interesting, and diverse group of volunteers. One friend on the trip describes himself as a “Lebanese Armenian from India with a Brazilian passport who was baptized in Montreal, but now resides in Armenia.” Like I said, everyone is quite interesting and they mostly all grew up in an Armenian community and most speak the language fluently.


Anonymous opportunities said...

It's time to take charge of your future and independence by having your own business!

9:49 PM  

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