Day 12 of Rally: Touring Tiblisi

5164 kms traveled so far. Harriet didn’t move an inch today.
38/200 kids sponsored. Help send a rural child to school by donating at http://happyharriet.co

Today we stay put in Tbilisi, Georgia. Gave our bodies and minds some rest.

Morning started off with Anitha traveling to a phone store to get her SIM card figured out while I spammed more people via email and messenger demanding dollars. Having figured out the public transport directions to the phone store, Anitha went to the bus stop that was 5mins away with enough time to catch the 8:30am number 31 bus. It was no more than a 1hr job, but when she didn’t return until 11am I began to wonder what had befallen her. Finally she arrived at 11:30 with her tale of reduced brain function. Apparently she stood in the bus stop for well over an hour staring hard a every blue bus that stopped and being puzzled why none of them was numbered 31. After some miming and pointing at colors in her blouse, someone made her understand she had to be looking out for a yellow colored bus! The blue buses were modern buses whereas the yellow ones looked like large vans – not deducing they were also public transport (even though they were stopping, picking up and dropping off passengers at the same stop she was standing at) she missed a few number 31 “buses” before she figured out her number 31 “bus” was a glorified large sized van! Once she returned, all worldly wise about bus colors and naming conventions, we went off to see some of the old town, walked up some forts and great looking old buildings, made friends with a carpet seller named Gusha (means “rising sun” in Georgian) whom we completely deflated by sharing that “Usha” (which also means rising sun in Indian languages) is a girl’s name.

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Met a man from Crimea who is working here and doesn’t want to go back there because of war and corruption. He knew a lot more about Goa than we did! Met a friend of a friend for dinner and discovered portion sizes in Georgia are as large as US – too much food, too little space in stomach, but had a hearty Georgian dinner of bean pancakes, mushroom soup, boiled potatoes with dill, momos (don’t think they were very Georgian), some amazing ground spinach cakes, and the ever-present and always welcome tomato cucumber salad with parsley.

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Tomorrow’s plan is to cross Georgia-Azerbaijan border + 5hrs of driving to halt overnight in a town called Ganja 😂

We are slowly inching up again with 38/200 kids sponsored. Please help share our stories at work, in your neighborhood, any communities you belong to etc. – people seem to appreciate the entertainment and hopefully will be moved to send more rural kids to school instead of to work http://happyharriet.co