Tuesday, October 28, 2008

dive

i love radio. 

thus radioactive 6:00 pm on krcl every friday and occasional 'dirty boulevard' on mondays at 10:30pm, sitting in for jionny.

our music tastes are similar, we are 'salt lake friends' which is this general term that i have come up with referring to that special bond that one builds with another over years in this city, without ever being 'best friends' or 'lovers' but somehow the bond is strong, in fact in some ways impenetrable. perhaps this happens in every city, but it is different in this city. anyway that's another topic. here is what i did want to say

i often dive in the water, not wondering if i am a good swimmer. i dive in because i really want to swim. i want it so badly that i forget to ask myself: toma do you know how to swim? i often can't wait and don't even take my dress off. this spontaneity is exciting to my body, my brain. in fact i feel really natural in the water, i feel as though i have always been swimming. but is what seems always what is? i start thinking maybe this is not good, maybe i will drown. i don't want to drown, i want to stay in the water for a long long time, swimming. beautifully. i want to charm the beasts. i want to go as deep as i can, in the darkest parts of the ocean. i act fearless of the darkness and the cold water and the beasts in the water,  but reality is i have always been scared to drown.  

i love radio. that is how 

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Friday, October 24, 2008

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

conference

it was great! meeting everyone was great, especially bernard, a french priest with perfect georgian, sasha a young extremely smart student who spoke in georgian so well that he was correcting my speech (or trying to) plus, he spoke many other dialects that I can't even pretend to understand. Mr. Gippert, a german professor also with immaculate georgian, etc. my presentation was fine, but nothing compared to the dancing and conversations that went on, in between the presentations.

more of tbilisi

more of my hometown. this is the area i went to school in. it is near downtown. the last building is opera house. we went to a performance few nights ago, instead of opera we got a lot of ethnic dancing and some opera. it was great. those are the streets keti (my best friend) and i wondered as we skipped school back in 1991. not much has changed, it all looks the same as we skip the conference and wonder the streets.



Thursday, October 9, 2008

dancing

http://tvali.ge/index.php?action=watch&v=16708

watch this!!

it is really stupid that i can't figure out how to do this (if there is anyone out there that can help, it would much appreciated and needed :)) meanwhile please copy and paste the link. this happened in a russian restaurant, they got them to play traditional georgian music.

there is a lot of pride (vulnerability) in the air right now.

p.s. the guys are much better in this clip than girls, however don't think that is always the case!

reading


this is another long time friend. he has been a poet for a long time here in tbilisi. i went to a bookstore and the cashier was reading his book. it was nice. all of my friends from that circle are still writing and publishing sometimes (it's much easier here) and doing readings and experimental theater. i went to a reading where a german guy read a part of his story, it was about the caucasus. the german guy is doing his dissertation about georgian mythology and if the heros from them translate into the modern times in Georgia. i thought it was pretty cool. they asked me to translate some of the contemporary georgian poetry, i might. but somehow that seems intrusive right now. i like just reading it and returning to tbilisi and seeing the names of friends and classmates and acquaintances on the shelves of the local bookstores.

old tbilisi




this is where i would like to film the script that i have been writing for (?) years.
life here has not changed for long time. or at least it seems that way.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

war


there has been so much suffering in georgia in the last few years. people here are amazing, because i still see them smiling and opening their doors to strangers and on the streets treating russian people with so much love. it is not people's fault, as my aunt told me. georgia use to be the country of so many ethnicities and religions. it is so sad to see a place like this to be torn by a political war. i grew up spending summers in abkhazia and in ossetia. The escalation of the conflict into normal georgian territory has brought countless harms to georgia's infrastructure, economy, and - most imoportantly - people. people have worked so hard to rebuild this place since the 1990s, this has put everything back by countless years.

dagny on a shelf


this is a photo i found on a shelf of my aunt's apartment. there must be so much of filling in the gaps, they know so little about all of us. they knew me when i was 15, the funny thing is i don't think we all really change that much. certain essence of who we are stays the same. when i am back i realize how not changed i am. i hope my daughter will have a desire to find her roots one day.

kindergarten friends


these are some of the girls i grew up with. they are so sweet and nice to me, it is hard to imagine i had ever left them.

a view so familiar


this is a view that is so familiar to me. it is taken from our apartment's balcony. the caucasus mountains surround the whole city. war or no war, they stand high. we live on the 5th floor. "mtkvari" river flows in front of the apartment building. the sound of traffic from outside makes me think of every single night falling asleep. these are the same sounds my grandma must have heard in the last few years, while i have been away.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

On the way to Tbilisi!


Chicago airport - at first the hummus snacks and random conversationalists such as a strange icelandic man, two french guys in way too nice of clothes and nice minneapolis lady who would not shut up, was all endearing, but now i have been here too long.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

contrast






rough and tumble of urban streets, overflowing daladalas, speeding fruit vendor bicyclists, sidewalk hawkers, paddle stoned arabic towns, masai selling jewelry and natural remedies, young suit wearing obama supporters, muslim children with kuran books under their arms and modern high rises. The culture and society here has so many layers, so much more complex than we often give it a credit for, by calling it a general term like "3rd world country"...

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