On Monday, I went into Skopje to see the Peace Corps doctors. The pain in my hip was still really bad, and they wanted to give me a proper evaluation. Well we ended up at the hospital, and they gave me an MRI to rule out any possible spinal problems. Although I have some scoliosis in my lower spine, they couldnt find anything wrong that would be causing my hip pain. I was definitely relieved, but at the same time, we were all a little frustrated with not knowing the root of the problem. They wanted to keep me in Skopje to see another doctor to rule out some other possibilities, but I REALLY wanted to just go home and rest in the comfort of my own home with proper pain medicine. After being given some pain meds and muscle relaxers, I got a ride back to Kocani with a local family I know (and now love).
Seriously, this family is awesome. One of their daughters just got accepted into the YES program, which allows students from here to travel to the US and study in an American high school for one year. Their daughter, Elena, is SO sweet. She is going to do an awesome job while she is there. We talked a lot about her thoughts on leaving, and it's really very interesting, because her and I will be in VERY similar situations. She will be missing her family, friends, and home, much like I do here. I also spoke some with her parents, and I offered for them to meet my mother when she comes (in only a couple weeks!!!!), so that the moms could talk...they, too, will have a lot in common. Anyways, this family took me, free of charge, into Skopje with them. Along the way, they treated me like I was one of the family..bought me food and drinks and insisted I didnt need to pain any money. Most people in Macedonia are hospitable, but some people are exceptional. The care they showed me really made my day and my pain so much better....it may not seem like a lot to any of you, but it meant a lot to me.
So I've been stuck on my couch since Saturday. I've watched a lot of movies and TV shows online. I've managed to make food and drink plenty of coffee and juice. I booked my travel plans for the summer trip I will have with Chad. We booked tickets to go to Corfu, Thessaloniki, Athens, Zakynthos, Milan, and Venice. Along the way, we also want to hit up Rome and maybe Florence or something. All together, our flights cost UNDER $400 total per person, which is remarkable!! Living in Eastern Europe sure does have its perks. :D I'm really very excited about this trip.
In other news, I had a some really great things happen today. This morning, 3 of my dancing ladies came by my house for a visit. I was SOOOOO happy to see them. I missed them!! They brought me bananas and juice. We sat around talking for a while, and it made me so proud to hear that they'd been still holding Zumba classes, even when I wasnt there. Furthermore, they did a great job and had an excellent turnout. I couldnt have been happier.
As the girls were leaving, I was at the door, and my neighbor from across the street waved for me to come over for a coffee. Seeing as how it was a couple of feet away, and my only other option was to go back up to my couch, I decided to seize the moment to get to know my new neighbors better. I'm so glad I did, b/c I had a great time meeting the family. The grandmother and mother dont speak English, but we communicated just fine in Macedonian! The son of the family came home near the end. He is 24, and last summer he worked in Gatlinburg, TN. SMALL WORLD, RIGHT?! He spoke excellent English, and the whole family offered an open invitation for me to visit whenever I want. Oh, and they had a big beautiful white dog, which I got to pet and love on the whole time, which also made me really happy. :D
After resting on the couch for the rest of the day, I took some more medicine so that I could tolerate going to the school's French show. I had helped a group of 4th year girls put together a CanCan dance for the show, and my French friend, Arnaud, and his girlfriend offered to drive me. We had a great time!! Honestly, I was embarrassed by everyone seeing me limp so badly. I felt like I looked ridiculous. And I think a lot of people were just confused as to what was even wrong with me, but it's just hard to explain. It doesnt matter though, b/c the girls did an EXCELLENT job. Check it out:
After the show, I really wanted to just go home and rest my hip, b/c I was in pain, but Aleksandra and Arnaud offered to go eat. I love sharing meals with them, so I agreed. We had a feast of frog legs, fried onion rings, and salads. It was great!! Stefani also found time to swing by, which made me so so so so happy. She gave me her senior photo with the sweetest note written on the back, and IN ENGLISH!! I love that girl, and I'm going to really be sad when she goes off to college this summer.
I wont be back at work tomorrow. Honestly, I want to try to go to school on Thursday, just to observe the Zumba class and see all my ladies and Emilija. This weekend will just be resting, and hopefully I'll be feeling much better. If the pain doesnt get better in a couple of days, Ill need to go back to Skopje to see another doctor, but let's all think positive thoughts. :D