Walking in Urban and Rural Georgia

In my first study abroad experience — 3 months in Barcelona — I found that some of my most redeeming experiences and memories came from simply exploring the city. Granted, there hasn’t been much time to do so in Tbilisi with busy weekdays of classes and frequent weekend excursions. However, I have managed to carve …

Continue reading Walking in Urban and Rural Georgia

Advertisements

Georgian Hospitality in Action

So, I have been rather spectacularly sick this past week. Horrible timing, as it overlapped with our program's trip out to Batumi and the last week in Tbilisi. Somehow, I am always ill the last week of July, which is somewhat impressive considering it is neither flu nor cold season. Luckily, the worst of it …

Continue reading Georgian Hospitality in Action

Where Are You From?

This question is ubiquitous when you meet new people – whether in the United States or traveling overseas. Granted, it is easy to answer abroad: я из Америки, из США. Most people can guess I am American anyway, especially when surrounded by other Americans, by volume, laughter, and most likely, dress. Still, some may wish …

Continue reading Where Are You From?

First Impressions and Sights In and Around Tbilisi

Sunday, July 1st All 7 of our study abroad group in Georgia describes a similar arrival experience: being driven from the airport, surrounded by a seemingly alien language, in the middle of the night. Then, some hasty greetings (and perhaps food after 24+ hours of being in planes or airports), and finding some brief comfort …

Continue reading First Impressions and Sights In and Around Tbilisi

Language Matters for Development Work

Last week my internship with the National Democratic Institute in Georgia took me to the beautiful resort town of Borjomi, where I had the unique opportunity to observe trainings for local government officials.  The topic of the training was election campaign management, and NDI flew in an American expert for the occasion – a distinguished …

Continue reading Language Matters for Development Work

Women’s Political Participation in Georgia

In my orientations preparing for Georgia, gender was a major topic of discussion. I learned that while society is progressing, there are still traditional biases about women and women’s' roles in Georgia. I prepared to be treated differently as a woman in the country. Some of my expectations were met consistently: men, for example, do …

Continue reading Women’s Political Participation in Georgia

From Tbilisi to Mestia and Back Again

Friday night a few friends and I boarded a train at Tbilisi Station bound for the western village of Zugdidi. The train was quite comfortable. Having been in countries where trains have six bunks to a cabin, I found the four-bunk cabin to be spacious, the cushions soft, and the quiet and darkness sufficient for …

Continue reading From Tbilisi to Mestia and Back Again

Communism in 21st Century Georgia

In the hills that surround and define Tbilisi, a solitary villa overlooks the city, a testament to the power of capitalism and the free market. It is an obscene display of wealth, complete with security, a giraffe, and a shark tank. The villas owner has a personal fortune of several billion, equal to 50% of …

Continue reading Communism in 21st Century Georgia

An Armenian-American in Georgia

I arrived in Tbilisi calm, without expectations. Maybe because it was almost 4 am when I finally stepped into my cab, or maybe because of my exhausting two-day layover in Munich, which included a missed flight and an unexpected friendship with a stoic Romanian stranger. In any case, my excitement quota had already been fulfilled …

Continue reading An Armenian-American in Georgia

Cross at Your Own Risk

I consider myself very lucky to be in Georgia and to have lived here for the past year. Sakartvelo, as the country is known in its native tongue, is a beautiful and geographically diverse state which offers a number of exciting opportunities for students and travelers alike. The cuisine, culture, and especially the Georgian people …

Continue reading Cross at Your Own Risk