Published: December 6th 2011December 5th 2011
Having arrived a day before other people in our group we spent the day exploring the city by foot with two of our fellow TLG members. Gerogian drivers are crazy, a zebra crossing does not mean that they will stop or even slow down - there were definately a few close calls today. We explored some of the old city and wonderd through streets and parks. The majority of the buildings were built in the soviet era and are in very poor condition, it is facinating to see how destroyed buildings can look if they are not maintained. It was good however to see that they are in the process of rebuilding and repairing the old buildings with construction work going on all over the town. Not only does this provide jobs but the buildings that are repaired are very beautiful. It would have been interesting to see the city 20 years ago when they began this process after leaving the soviet union. We felt very safe walking down the streets, but we did get funny looks from time to time, I think it was probably due to us smiling at ever person we passed (Georgians don't smile at each). The
old town is very nice and had some new structures as well, such as the new bridge (it does not have a name yet so they call it new bridge) which is shown in our photos.
After all the walking it was time to get some lunch, we finally decided on a small family run Georgian resturant which was was half under the ground. We were taken into a small private room within the resturant and were served by two really nice georgian women. There was an English translation of the Georgian menu which was not very helpful as we still had no idea what we were ordering. Aaron took over and ordered a huge number of Georgian dishes which we all shared -we ate sooo much food that we needed to be rolled out of the resturant and there was still lots left over. The whole meal including drinks cost 10 GEL each equal to about $6.
When we returned to our motel the remainder of the TLG members had arrived and were looking worse for wear after their long trips. Including Alex, we are the only Australians who are in this group, the majority are Americans
with two poms, a scot and a South African. Everyone is very nice and we all have gotten along so far, but are nervous about where in Georgia we may end up and what family/conditions we will end up living in. We had another huge all you can eat dinner with many different Georgian foods which we are still working out exactly what they are, got to know everyone a bit better and left to our rooms for the night.
There are many things we have forgotten to write but we are exhausted, so hopefully we will add it all in another time, hope you like the photos.
There are more photos below