thats me and my brother. obviously, i'm the one with a santa face. but...in az it is not santa claus, but instead a new years/winter non religious affiliated kind of guy. i'm forgetting his official name here and hating myself for it. i hope to find it later. but, in general, christmas and new years is rolled into one holiday for azerbaijan. of course, christmas is not really christmas, but the faces of santa claus and the yeni il (new years) tree, as i've said before, have been integrated into new years. this is completely normal for me...i don't celebrate christmas. however, for some of my pcv friends, this is hard to take. i've never met so many people who are somewhat disturbed by the idea of a lack of christmas in their lives.
on otherhand, chanukah started yesterday and i actually got a chanukah present! ha! my friend Andrea, as usual, was on top of it and she got me a stuffed kirpi!!!!! i love it. ohhhh man. kirpi = hedgehog. so now i have a stuffed animal hedgehog. my old cluster loves to tease me (mene satashir ?) about my love for kirpi. happy jew time to all.