Sunday, March 3, 2013

Coats, Cans and International Women's Day

Tanya is the happiest today I have seen her in two months.  Yesterday she took the bus to Dnipropetrovsk to go shopping.  She has been needing a full length dress coat for some time.  It is often too warm for her heavy leather/fur coat but she had nothing but short casual jackets.

She phoned me about 3:00.  She found the coat of her dreams, classic black, "not expensive", only $375.  But there was this car length burgundy coat she just loved.  What should she do?  "Buy the black coat because you need it and the burgundy will be from me for International Women's Day"*.

Both coats are well-made, from St. Petersburg and are cut "to fit Russian women".  I owe her $400. She wore the red one home and it looked awesome on her.  The black one was just lovely, too.

I didn't sleep good last night.  Happens from time to time.  I lay awake for hours and drift off about 3:00 am or something.  Tanya laughed and said she knew why:
"Ivan, why can't you sleep?"
"Because I can't pay Maxim next door the money I owe him"
Wife pounds on the wall of the apartment, "Maxim, my husband can't pay the money he owes you......Go to sleep, Ivan, it is Maxim who cannot sleep now".

This morning she and Lina went to town for groceries.  Tanya was dressed to the nines. Black skirt, black and white sweater, her new black coat, black and white scarf.  She. Looked. Good.  And she felt good.  "I have wanted a coat like this for a long time.  I feel like a woman!" **

When they came home, I said "All men look at you but you come home to me".  "You're the only one who buys me coats"..

Called my son on Skype later in the day. He was cleaning the bathroom, down on his knees scrubbing the toilet and the floor.  I said, "That's fair as you pee all over it".  "Not ALL over it; just in one spot".

I told him about Tanya's new coats and mentioned that Friday, March 8 was International Women's Day.  "Hey, Mel, Friday is International Women's Day. I won't hit you that day and I won't complain if you don't have my supper ready on time".

*For the uninitiated, in Ukraine and Russia IWD and birthdays are when men spring for gifts for their beloved...or else. 
** Note to husbands: Anything you can do to make your wife feel good about herself pays off in the long run.  It isn't always easy, either. I know this.


  1. "You're the only one who buys me coats".

    Let's hope that a man who can afford more coats than you can doesn't come along!

  2. Women are suppose to be spoiled - it is our job to make them feel good about themselves.

  3. Love this post. Wish we had a similar reverence for IWD in Australia. I remember when working in Laos that it was customary for men to give women a party in govt offices on IWD. But in the education office where I worked, the women made or brought in most of the food and they also set it all out for the party. The men made ritual offerings during the party such as "Can I get you another drink?") but that was it! the Lao women saw the irony in this, but they were very used to their men being useless - domestically, that is.

    1. IWD in North America is all about equality and such. The only ones who celebrate it are the ball-breakers and bra-burners. Here it is about the exact opposite, it is about womanhood and femininity.
      Canada has a Secretaries Day where bosses take them for lunch and buy flowers.

  4. "You're the only one who buys me coats."

    Classic Tanya!

  5. ** Note to husbands: Anything you can do to make your wife feel good about herself pays off in the long run. It isn't always easy, either. I know this.

    Always good advice!

  6. I got too soon old, too late smart. But I learned.


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