Thursday, October 19, 2006

sleepy in Tbilisi

Fourth day in Tbilisi. Rain stopped after two days; now it is sunny.

Hotel (Beaumonde) continues to be very nice; nice meals in the evening, same breakfast every morning. Since I am still slimming I am only nibbling at the food and I hope it will show some time!

Did some running yesterday morning; since I am staying on a steep slope I walked up and ran down and sideways. This morning walked to work; took a slightly scenic route and it took 50 minutes; could have done it in 10 minutes less. Also went 'over the top' with a very steep climb up and then walking down, rather further than necessary.

Yesterday tried to go to the theatre to an English play; passed one theatre which will have the Threepenny Opera on tomorrow (only the play); then took a wrong turn and missed the other theatre. Since the play is not well known and it started at 21.00 hrs anyway, it was no great loss - and a good little walk in the evening, followed by this mornings long walk. No wonder I am tired!

Work is continuing to be good. Weird working hours - from 10 am to 6 pm, though usually we finish at 7 pm. Now looking for a flat to rent for the next year to enable me to stay more cheaply and in my own space. Even if I am not here for some time it might be cheaper than a hotel stay.

Tbilisi looks lovely from above, though in the city it has a fairly neglected air, much like Yerevan. It is not as destroyed as Yerevan in terms of old buildings pulled down and new ones erected, though in other parts of the town there is plenty of new building. Electricity has failed twice this week already in our office; we have a generator on the balcony so it is not a great problem.

On the weekend we are absolutely not allowed to work according to EU rules so I will take time to walk/run around and have a good look at things and places. Unless I am moving house, of course. Also need to get ballet tickets for the ballet that is on next week; and might pick up a Georgia today newspaper to see what is happening.

Today the president of the state social insurance fund was arrested, together with some of his sidekicks. Apparently there was one employer who took on lots of pregnant women, took the state maternity benefit and forgot to pass it on to the ladies concerned. He was arrested a week ago, and now the head of the social insurance fund has fallen, too. When we went to a related organisation, security at the entrance was very tight indeed, though the media were let in quite easily.