– Welcome to the first day of Spring and Mărțișor (pronounced Mart-see-shore)! I walked into my business partner’s office only to be greeted with a gift. I was handed a pin-charm with two threaded snowflakes, one white, one red, and a woven leaf dangling from a metal pin. It is believed that the red string of Mărțișor signifies fire, blood, and a symbol of life, associated with the passion of women. Meanwhile, white is the color of snow, clouds, and the wisdom of men. In this interpretation, the thread of a Mărțișor represents the union of the feminine and the masculine principles, the vital forces which give birth to the eternal cycle of nature. The pin symbolizes strength and health for the year to come. In more modern times it has translated into a symbol for friendship, love, appreciation, and respect. Both women and men wear it pinned to their clothes, close to the heart, until the last day of March, when they tie it to the branches of a fruit-tree. I was told by a business owner’s wife at the front entrance that if my pin can remain hanging on the tree branch it will be a blessing for many beautiful children to come. Considering my ample Peace Corps salary I hope she was not foreseeing this for the next few years or so…
– At 3pm last Friday, I attended a local recital for the start of Spring, starring my business partner’s son Iulian:
– After the performance, Iulian came and set next to us where I told him with moves like that he could have any girl he wants.
– Working a committee to create a Ted Talks event to celebrate and reflect on the 20th anniversary of Peace Corps Moldova. We held our first meeting on Saturday with our team of 7. Really great ideas coming along as the event will be translated on a monitor into Romanian, special guests will be invited to speak including: RPCV’s, members of the Moldovan business and political community, and the Peace Corps Country Directors. Stay tuned for more details to come… the event will not disappoint and will be recorded and uploaded online thereafter.
– Made plans to visit my friend and fellow PCV Dan and his wife Jana in Dondușeni, Moldova in two weeks where we will prepare food (possibly live chickens), knit bracelets for their local business club, brainstorm Jana’s April Fool’s Day pranks against Dan, and where I will square off against Dan in a Moldovan themed eating competition.