Nata's reaction wa a bit different: "I'd rather sleep in a jail! I can't believe you would let me sleep at this guy's place alone. And he is scary, he looks like a russian drunk!"
I got used to Igor so I didn't notice but it's true, his face is quite scary with his fallen teeth... russian drunk is the right way to go except he is greek. Now, Igor looks even more scary because he has gotten into a fight and got a pretty nasty beating. No broken bones but his face is a mess, blood everywhere. His cheeks ere twice their normal size and his nose is purple. He looks like a drunk version of Terminator.
"Three guys jumped me when I went for the cigarettes. I didn't sleep for two nights," says Igor
He didn't see the doctor, that's not his style. "It'll pass"
So yeah, not the best welcoming party but then again, it is a big house near the center of Bishkek. I guess Nata will have to get used to travelling with me and I will get used to travel with Nata.
Either way, I am very happy that she is here, it seems kind of unreal that she made it to Kyrgyzstan, I still didn't get used to it.
This night we manage to sleep a bit despite Igor leaving on the TV set until 2AM.
We went to Bishkek, not really to visit because there is nothing to see but to give my talking cirlces, to say bye to my friends.
I feel a bit bad for Nata because I remember how I felt in georgia. The situation is kind of the same the other way around, she must feel like a third wheel. I don't like it and I fear she might just pack her things and go away. But I sometimes underestimate Nata; considering what she has been through, she is more resistant than she seems.
But there is resistant and resistant. You can resist to hitchhike through siberia, you can get through constant sexual harassment and whatever, that doesn't mean that your nerves will withstand dealing with the Chinese embassy.
After talking to them, Nata is already considering to fly back. The chinese embassy is refusing all invitation letters except from members of the government. So basically unless you are a close friend of the president of the people's dictatorship of China, you have to go through an agency.
The next night Igor gets drunk. Not really drunk but enough to start about his conspiracy theories.
"And this is all the fault of the Iseaelis, they're behind all of it! Masons! Masons! They are financing the world's doom. But I will go slowly... infiltrate their masonic lodge in America... I will bring them down one by one, I, Igor the greek."
At midnight we really want to sleep but Igor sits to Nata's bed and starts yelling: "You are not going to China! You fools! The chinese will have your balls, both of you! Fucking chinese they go hand in hand with the Americans, China, America, Illuminati all the same, you cannot fool me!"
"Come one Igor we want to sleep! We can talk about all this tomorrow!"
"Tomorrow I won't have the vodka to let me tell all these things" That was kind of my point. And Igor continues:
"And you and you... you don't think I know who you are?"
"And who am I?"
"You are an American spy! You fucking french, you are spying for America you think you are on the right side? You are so wrong! Why don't you leave us Kyrgyz people alone?"
"Come one Igor you know I am no spy."
"So what are you doing here in Kyrgyzstan posing as a tourist and you, and you," he turns to Nata, "why did you betray your country?"
"What? Let me sleep!"
"Why did you betray your beloved country, why betray Russia, the perfect land, why do you want to destroy russia that never did anything wrong to anyone"
He then goes on how russia is the best country in the world who never attacked anyone, who always defended itself against evil nations funded by americans, and he advised us to change sides and side with russia aainst America because nobody can destroy russia anyway.
"And nobody knows that during the second world war there were machines who were chopping people automatically, they were running over them like bulldozers and making steaks out of them like this..."
And he turns his hands quickly, one arount the other to mimic the bulldozer. With his beaten up face and the drunk expression on his face he really looks like a zombie.
I end up sleeping in Nata's room for safety reasons even though I know Igor wouldn't do anything to her.
The next day we are both tired, especially Nata because she didn't sleep well for a week. We tell igor that we are going to Karakol but the truth is we are just looking for another place to sleep in Bishkek. Nata says that Igor is just starting his "zapoy" which is a russian word that has probably no equivalent in english. It has been invented specially for russians and their huge drinking habits. When somebody is in zapoy, he will start to drink everynight and it will take him about a week to stop. I trust Nata on this because she is russian and she has seen more people with a drinking problem than I could possibly imagine.
"We russian people are fucked up, you know," she says once, "we grow up in this."
Me and Nata have found a way to communicate. I can't say we feel each other but we've found a common tongue, some understanding of each other. I don't spend my time looking for my place with her anymore.
My relationship with Janela is also coming into the mix and everything is kind of fine. Except that we still don't have a place to stay.
My contacts in Bishkek are all running dry mostly because most of them are girls and they can host only Nata. The problem with Nata is that some of them have a crush on me so handing them Nata would be tactless to say the least, not to mention not very comfortable for Nata.
My last hope is Nurbolot from Osh who studies and lives in Bishkek. I met him at the bus station, I was waiting for Elina, my english lesson. They asked if I needed help and so on and by the way he has told me that I can stay at his house if I ever needed something. Sometimes it's hard to distinguish between a true invitation and just politeness but now it is our last option. There is also the boss of the sewing machine company who hosted us with Ilona for one night in Bishkek but that was two months ago.
I try Nurbolot and he says yes! He has a student appartment in west Bishkek. There are about a million people living there, coming and going. Nurbolot is nineteen but as many Kyrgyz he has more life experience than his age tells. He speaks english, with mistakes but well enough for us to understand each other quite well. He completly understand that we are tired and gives us as much space as he can. Nata can sleep, we can rest and... he has the internet. He even knows how to cook well enough to even impress Nata a bit. He keeps calling her "Misses Natacha" and says "Can you wake up the Natacha" which gives me the impression to deal whith some kind of esoteric object when it comes to Nata.
Nata is very tired but sleeping doesn't help. She gets more tired instead, her condition gets worse. Her heart starts racing, her head hurts, it is scary.
"Don't leave me alone," she says and I realize that at that exact moment, this girl who was a complete stranger three months ago in armenia is actually my most familiar point in life and space. This is weird.
|It is cold in the morning...|
We stay one more day and then even one more day. Sometimes she can't even stand. We start discussing about her going back to Russian, even taking the next flight to Moscow. It is a very hard blow for me. I could let Ilona go without being too shaken. It was harder with Janela but I knew she had to go and I knew that I was not going to continue alone. However, Nata's departure was unexpected. This is it, I will be really alone now, in Kyrgyzstan. Now everybody has really left and every decision and every consequence is strictly mine to take and to bear. Now it is getting scary.
The next days it becomes a sure thing that Nata leaves. Chingiz calls, he says he can help, he has a heart doctor among his relatives. But the fate is sealed. We go to see a movie, we talk, we go to try clothes, Nata owes me for a bet she lost. And after that, we go to the airport. Nata is flying in the afternoon. She says we will see each other again and I think she is right.