Monday, September 12, 2005

Erti, Ori, Sami, Otkhi! (1, 2, 3, 4!)

I just got back from my first Georgian aerobics class, and it was in many ways, one of the more awesomely bizarre and hilarious experiences I've had here to date, but in ways that are really just too difficult to describe.

Just try to imagine the Coen Brothers or David Lynch shooting an aerobics class and you'll probably come close. Weird, skipping music (really, one song, over and over: "A kiss is still a kiss in Casablanca. But a kiss is not a kiss without your sigh"), power failures, a very determined instructor leading us as we breaststroke through the air, the cigarette smoke clouding the room. The treadmill in the corner was an inclined plane made up of, essentially, giant abacus beads for you to run on, and there was one girl in the class, sort of a Paris Hilton lookalike, super hot, but apparently so dim that when we were laying on one side doing manic leg lifts and the time came to switch to the other side, she couldn't figure out how to switch to her other legs and still face the instructor, so she just flipped her back to the instructor and watched the rows behind her to see what to do.

Oh hell, now I feel bad. I don't mean to be cynical and disparaging and elitist: I know it's probably not nice to come to a struggling country and laugh at their gym facilities. But it might be more insulting to walk everywhere clucking your tongue in pity at the poor dears, and anyway, my Georgian friend was laughing harder than I was. Yes, okay, there are some nice fancy Western-style gyms available if you want to pay for them. But does their athletic equipment include giant bamboo poles? I didn't think so.


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