Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Spotlight on: Our Volunteers

(Psst, sorry for the lack of blogposts lately. The internet has been rather unpredictable... ah, but I guess that is all part of the Kitezh experience.)

Now that you are all caught up on the game and how it ended, I wanted to shed some light on an element that was essential to making it all happen: the volunteers. Our volunteers came from Moscow, Smolensk, Belarus, Kaluga, and even Canada, Britain, and America. We did a variety of work, ranging from playing as monsters with the kids (trolls, bears, traders, drug-addicts even) to cooking, cleaning, and gardening, aka my end of the spectrum. More than that though, we had to make sure the morale of the kids stayed high, that they remained interested in the game, felt safe, and were happy being in Kitezh with us. We weren't the masterminds of the game (that title definitely goes to Vanya, he really was the game master), but we played an indispensable role in this role-playing game.  So, because they are so awesome and because I've been waiting for a post where I can share these pictures, I have decided to give you five reasons why volunteers are great.

1. They are inventive.
     This stud here is Illya from Kaluga, and he was a fellow resident of (the greatest city) Rifton. During his time here, he decided to create a new religion worshiping a mystic dragon from the game, Alduin. After he spread pamphlets and origami dragons, the kids were so hooked on this movement that when it looked like it was about to rain before the great fair, the children gathered together prayed to Alduin to aid them. And it didn't rain a drop!

2. They are zen.
     During our free time, Ira from Moscow and I like to gallop into wooden glens and punch dance out our rage. (Hot Rod quote, for those who don't know.) But really, with forests and paths like these all around, it's rare to not find volunteers walking around and exploring during breaks from work.

3. They are attractive.
     Come on, look at these good looking volunteers. Here we are cooling down outside after dancing to some Euro dub-step at one of the world famous Kitezh discos. Viva le Discotech!

4. They are talented.
      Here's a photo of me, Nastya from Moscow, and the portrait she drew of me! Kitezh attracts volunteers with all sorts of amazing talents, including artists, musicians, actors, and even linguists, hehe.

5. They are foreign.
     Ah, the fab four foreign volunteers, or as Roma calls us ABBA 2.0, with our student tour guide Yulia.  This picture was taken during our day trip to the nearby city of Kaluga, which was a great day to relax and take some time off from the game. Why is being a foreigner an advantage? Why not! We come from far away places (Canada, UK, USA), and we dedicate our time to learning Russian language and culture. We must be nuts... and I like it.  

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