Telling people we are in Armenia is kind of like "Where's Waldo" most people have no idea where we are or why, but we are back to Derek's mission! The picture above is of Mount Ararat it is now in present day Turkey but is known as the mountain on which Noah landed the Arc and it is our view from our first hotel.
Yerevan is the capitol city of Armenia and it was our first stop. The Soviet Union is still pretty prevalent in its influence here from all of the soviet statues that are placed all over to promote country pride to the very Russian food. Above we are next to the Mother of Armenia statue and below Derek is eating one of his favorite dishes, Khachapuri! Another thing about Armenia is they use a system of traveling called Marchutinis. They are van's that become packed with people commuting... and smelling their best.
A growing awareness in the media has been on the Armenian Genocide that occurred on 1915. Somewhere around one and a half million Armenians where killed by varied techniques that later Nazi Germany would use in their own holocaust. The museum there was a very sobering experience and below is the monument they made for all those who fell victim.
Armenia is full of beautiful churches and you can bet I made Derek take me to the majority of them.
The next part of trip was us road tripping it across the country! Thanks to two members that let us rent their car, Jora and his brother Valer. This is us just leaving the city.
Here come all of those Church Pictures. Armenians pride themselves on being the first Christian nation in 301 A.D
We went to another church that is situated on an island surrounded by Lake Sevan. Derek could never swim as a missionary now he is getting ready to strip and try out the water.
Ok this lake translated means "Clear Lake" although it was not that clear. But one of the Birthday presents I let Derek buy himself was a new water purifying devise called a SteriPEN. In short, it's a pen type thing that uses UV light to purify water. After Derek explained all this to some Armenian guy he of course dares Derek to try purifying the lake water... Thinking that this pen sounds like some kind of scam... So Derek does it. He said it still tasted like lake water but he was excited that it was now drinkable.
Feeding some ducks.
Feeding some ducks.
We went to visit some people here in an area of town where everyone lives in sheds called Domiks. They have been living here since 1988 when an earthquake forced them to leave their homes.
Another stop on the road trip was Garni. This pagan temple is found in a town that just celebrated its 4170th year birthday. It's crazy to be in a place with that kind of history!
Derek made me hike up to this spot with him for a picnic. It would have been great had the wind not almost carried me away. Here's Derek holding me down...
Armenia is full of inspirational pastoral settings.
Our hotels were all over the spectrum. This is one of the highs...
It is called the Tufenkian Hotel, very posh and after the other places we stayed it felt like a palace!
These holes in the ground are storage units that were used by the church for their food and drinks.
Derek of course had to hop in one...because he is a boy
I was trying to get warm in the little sunlight that I had, those churches are surprisingly cold so I look a little more enlightened that I actually am
I will leave you with a scenic shot as I could only show you some of the highlights of the trip and had to leave out many hilarious stories. Our next part of the adventure begins on an overnight train to Tiblisi, Georgia where will we be for the next 6 days!