Hiking Extravaganza!

>> Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The day after my birthday was a hiking extravaganza. Jason, Turan and I took everyone on the rounds that we always take guests on. Beautiful views, an old Albanian Church (2nd oldest in Azerbaijan?), The Moss Waterfall and of course what would a hike be without a crazy flooded river. Dogs were carried fun was had.

Pre hike, we all decided to pet the dog which turned into a group petting effort, it was nice. "Hey guys, I just saw something." Horror film?
The view of Lekit from Jason's school.
Jason and I being awesome, enough said.
The Johnson's looking lovely at the old Albanian church in Lekit.
Me teaching Derek, Stephanie and Jason how to drink wine like a Georgian. It's super fun, but you must have the talent!
Jason and I at the church.
Hanging out in some ruined part of a church, waiting out the rain.
Alicia and Myriam frolicking in the church yard.
Jason, James, me and Derek copy frolicking. I like Derek's form.
Jason helping out Tuziq. Poor little thing can't make it through on his own.
How are we getting over there?
The rock star that is Alicia crossing the river. This was a great team building excercise, Peace Corps should do this for training.
On top of the waterfall, I blatantly gave up and am standing in the water. No point trying.
Mr. Camera Man getting a good stance.
Myriam won the Lori Award. For those of you who are curious, The Lori Award is only given to the special few who fall down...and are typically covered in mud.
Derek and James showing us how to Protect Mother Nature!
It's almost like Jason is praying, apparently he really likes moss waterfalls.
The boys, inside the waterfall.
The final cross, the little rat that is Tuziq made it the whole way!

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The Best Dance Video Ever Created

video
This is by far the best thing to have come out of the entire birthday weekend. I have seen Jason dance many a time but I have yet to catch all of his moves in one video. It's hilarious. Uzal is in here showing off some awesome Russian moves and Turan marches around like a graceful gazelle. Of course what would this video be without Derek representing with his Azeri hand movements and rocker/skanking legs. However none can compare to the glory that is Big Daddy J. He does all of his signature moves: crazy irish jig foot work, stomping/marching, showing the power, pausing for dramatic effect and oh so many more. Enjoy, even watch it multiple times. I watch this every few days, it's that good.

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Birthday Dance Wars!

>> Monday, May 24, 2010

After birthday dinner and cake it was time to DANCE!!! There was a lot of crazy going around. For about 3 solid hours Derek and Jason didn't stop dancing. Besti (Jason's host mom) was terrified of her plants falling, Vagif (Jason's host dad) went to check the floor boards in case Jason stomped through it, all in all hilarious. But to begin lets look at the beautiful Johnson's getting their dance on.
The other couple of the evening - Turan and James.
Derek beginning the boys battle.
Jason breaking it out, nice footwork. Later on he just started stomping....broken/sprained toe?
Bailey and I representing Azerbaijani female dancing, circling around a kneeling and clapping James. I don't like girl dancing so this was my last attempt before I switched sides.
Derek prepping the stage for the boys war, note his form.
Prepping the power. We have to do a little jig to get ready.
Power was shown, battle was won. I rock.
Jason's just a little upset that he lost the dance war with me, because I'm awesome, and took it out on poor little Uzal. He's about 17 and one of Jason's students, and Jason showed him the power! This picture makes it look like Jason literally broke Uzal, I'm okay with this assumption.
Post dancing, our two rock stars. They danced for a good 3 hours straight and represented American's flawlessly. That is if you think American's like laughing and having a great time...I do!

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May 1st aka. The Best day EVER!

The day after the chalk war we all headed into Lekit for the official birthday celebrations! So after an extremely crowded maşrutka we all arrived in Lekit. Tea was served and then hoards of people began to arrive. It was an awesome night. So lets start with the birthday kiddos. 24 and 27!
Jason's thoughts - What's happening here?
The pretty, pretty Johnson's.
The extremely long table. About 10-15 Azerbaijani's and 10 more American's. Jason's host mom, Bestie, is a rock star.
The other end of the table. Mike, Alicia, Bestie, Stephanie, Bailey and Mariel.
Getting in on the man love. Derek just really likes kissing Jason.
Camera war, Jason and I battled. You decide which one wins.

Bestie slicing up the cake to feed to us, after we just cut it like we were getting married. Maybe I have a husband?
Kiddles giving mom a kiss. Tasty cake, great birthday, she deserved that kiss. I don't have any idea what Myriam is thinking.

At some point in the night we all ended up talking but Jason's host dad looks utterly bored. This man is fabulous, we have obviously failed at life.I'm not sure what this picture is but Jason looks confused, Mike looks angry and shocked, Derek maybe does not know what's happening so he's just looking pretty, and James is ready to fight someone.
Being awesome with Derek and Jason. I like the handsome trucker look Derek's rocking.
Heading out, note the official PCV get up of jeans, sleeping bags, and back packs. We look good!

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Last night of being 23!

April 30th began an awesome weekend in Qax. Turan, Jason's host brother came to partake in the festivities as we had the same birthday. So we celebrated our last night of being 26 and 23! Great friends also came up to my magical little site and we spent all night laughing and getting our pork on. Seriously...we have pork, Jason cooked it, we ate it. Which brings us to the first photo. This would be Jason showing off his awesome skills, Alicia enjoying it way too much, and Bailey not knowing how to control her excitement.
Next up Alicia and I in my nook! I love my nook and Alicia joined me, it's a really awesome spot because I can keep an eye on all the crazies inside and outside my house.
Here's most of the party crew. James, Stephanie, Myriam, Mariel, Bailey, Jason, and Turan!
Note the walls have already started getting decorated. Under Derek's "Qax Represent" sign Myriam poetically wrote, "...where pigs come to die and we come to eat them." PCV's are so starved of pork taht they almost cry when they get here.
Cute photo of the Lekit brothers!
Me back in my nook with pork and white sauce pasta. Awesome birthday meal.
Jason showing of his guns. haha he's going to kill me.
The Johnson's taking care of all the kids. Too much fun, not enough sleep.
Jaosn showing off his artistic side. My walls needed decorating and he has a Bachelor of Arts, that works right? Also Derek deciding that his form of expression cannot be contained to mere walls, Jaosn's pants will suffice.
I think Derek tried to get this photo with me so he could write on my pants too. It's okay I was drawing a shooting star!
This was the end product. Quite lovely if you ask me. Plus when I brush my teeth I can have something funny to look at.
Jaosn completely overed in chalk serenading us all, but in particular a sleeping Bailey, you can see her foot.
The chalk war got a little out of hand, but as most of us are english teachers in Azerbaijan we are used to being covered in chalk. Luckily there weren't students chasing us to beat it off our clothing.
Now we've just fully decided that Bailey should not be asleep. However Stephanie has yet to give up on covering me with said chalk. Bailey did wake up for a minute, just long enough to let us all know that shouting Bailey at the top of our lungs wasn't what she wanted.
Birthday boy and girl blowing out the candles.

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