I’ve got nothing to write. No great quotes, no special illustrations from life. It’s late and I’ve been sitting in front of the computer wondering what is special that I can share. The only thing I can think of is spring. Spring is pretty special here in Ukraine. After a long harsh winter – the waking up and coming to life of so many trees and flowers is special. But I thought that was a bit boring to share with you. Then I realised – it is only boring because we have made it boring. We live fast-paced, modern technological lives. We update our Facebook statuses, we listen to our iPods or play doodle jump on our iPhones . We forget to look at the grass, the flowers, the trees, the bugs, the bees, the river, the clouds etc. Spring is beautiful. On Friday night the trees on my street were so laden with white blossoms that in the headlights of my van I almost thought it was winter and the snow had returned. I hope I don’t get so busy or so distracted that I forget to enjoy the miracle of spring.


Ukraine has 10 public holidays a year – and four of them are in May! So this month is not only hectic with accomplishing many end-of-year tasks (like reports, tests and end of year concerts) but fitting it into short working weeks.

We want to finish strong for the year. A few students have dwindled off in their attendance, desire, progress or mixture of all three.

We need to make a decision about where to be next year.

Our end of year concert is almost here. It is coming upon us really quickly and there is much to do. I have some of my students enthusiastically practicing “The Animals March Two by Two” and “Chicken Little”.

Also we celebrate the birth of Natasha and Alyosha’s second child, Denis born 30th April. Natasha has been understandably a little absent from work recently. There are so many things I still rely on her for and I have had a few phone calls to her in hospital.  Simeon and Asia and their little girl, Amelia have returned. I will meet with Simeon this week to talk about his involvement again with UTSIM – but it’s good to have them back again.



Can you imagine – cricket in Ukraine!! As the Twenty20 world cup is underway – Ukraine cricket is looking for ICC recognition, an aim to develop the grassroots – and the possibility of qualifying for the Olympics in 2020. Wayne – a mate from Kaharlyk has built an indoor training facility and is considering one or even two outdoor pitches. He has been using cricket training as a means of having regular contact with young boys who are at a loose end. I hope to be involved a little this summer. Not just because it’s fun to play cricket (I don’t like cricket, I love it), but because I truly believe meaningful relationships can be made through the avenue of sport.


I finished The Two Towers by Tolkien and now I’m cheering on Pippin and Gandalf as they try to hold Gondor against the powers of evil in “Return of the King”. There is nothing more to report. The list ‘to read’ is long.


To Havard.

Love Jono

Keep Looking Up