17 February 2005: Almaty

No pictures. Lost due to laptop failure.

Not much today. Every morning I write a lecture for my class and connect to read email. Finally a day without depressing emails on cancellation of my experiment. I am very concerned about the funding for my research activity. I hope the NSF cuts us a break as they had pushed us to devote more of our effort to this experiment. Rita responds to her mother on Carla. Rita's mother said my mother was not doing so well, she is in much pain, and thus they kept their visit short. They will get back to visit her again next week. My mother should call tomorrow. Carla continues to be fine, living a paradisical life without her parents around.

Very cold today. The wind has kicked up a bit and it was only -16C at 10:00. Picture on the route is a new University under construction. The mountains are dimly visible through a haze. Our visit went well, much like the past two days. It is easier to get pictures with Sergio smiling, as he is smiling more. He loves to pick through our bags and find a toy or food. He calls this "Gish" or something like that. He seems to like putting the toys away after he is done with them, but he got upset when we made him help clean up the Lincoln Logs before he could go Gish. He did try to escape before time was up.

A quick stop at the Ramstore; we were out of Laundry soap. The washer capacity is very small, and we have few clothes. Thus we wash every day. No dryer but it is very dry inside and everything dries on a stand inside in only a few hours. We went for a short walk, as Rita is feeling better, to a nearby bookstore, the Oxford Bookstore. Mostly books for learning English, but some novels and such. We were going to walk more, but it was just too cold. We look forward to tomorrow when we plan to go out for dinner and then see the ballet. Dima says it should warm up tomorrow.

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