Ben Sweeney’s Weblog

Got a Fulbright, living in Georgia for a year.

In Case of War

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So, I was visiting a friend, Tomas, yesterday for coffee before this running/drinking club thing I joined (called the Hash House Harriers – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hash_House_Harriers). Taped to his fridge was a list of stuff to get before a war with Russia. He had all kinds of things on it, a lot of dried goods like rice, as well as a kerosene cooker, and all the cash from his bank account. He even put firearm (with a ? next to it) on the bottom of the list. He put Jan. 15 as the date by which to execute this list, his calculation is that there will be a war with Russia roughly corresponding with the Obama inauguration.

Meanwhile, I’ve been hearing a lot of rumours myself that there will be a war sometime around New Years, similar to the Russian attack on Chechnya a few years ago. Apparently Russian soldiers in Abkhazia have been intimidating Georgians on the border, reminding them about that attack. I know these are just rumours, but I still decided to make a list myself, entitled “In Case of War.”

I went out and bought about 20 candles, a bunch of matches, some cans of sweetened condensed milk, a few churchkhela (this Georgian food that keeps well and is high calorie but healthy-ish – nuts on a string dipped into condensed grape juice like candles, they are called Georgian Snickers sometimes), and some new socks.

I’m still going to go buy some buckwheat (grechka in Russian) and some pasta, and take out a bunch of dollars. I feel like all this stuff will come handy at some point, and I’ll use it, so I don’t feel bad for stocking up. Also, the electricity is going to get cut off at some point, even if there isn’t a war, it’s happened a few times already. About the dollars, the Georgian Lari seems pretty unstable and artificially propped up, so having USD could be handy.

I might have gotten some moonshine as well, but my freezer is already filled with it, because people keep adding to my stock faster than it would be humanly possible to drink it. Although, speaking of alcohol, I recently went out to probably the biggest grocery store in Tbilisi – Goodwill, where I got some more booze. We were just picking up supplies for the Hash event, and stumbled upon the liquor section. There were about 10 tasting booths staffed by attractive young Georgians giving out free samples of all kinds of wine, cognac, and vodka. They had some quite nice and very affordable cognacs so I bought 2 bottles to add to my cabinet. That will be nice for the cold winter days, sipping on some fine cognac, swapping rumours about when the Russians are going to come.

Tomas has a friend who also made a list of things to do in case of war. This list consists of only one thing: Go to Tomas’s house.

Written by bensweeney

December 29, 2008 at 3:04 pm

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