Last night Rubo interrogated me for 3 hours, he called me into the office after my voice recording, 9pm to midnight to quiz me on my motivations for coming to Armenia, and why I agreed to do this Janapar project, and he loosened my tongue with beer and cigarettes. Whatever answer I gave, was not enough, he wouldn’t believe me, always wanting more.
I came to Armenia, to understand what it means to be Armenian, because one day, I want my kids to identify as Armenian, like I did growing up, but how do I do that? I went to an Armenian wedding in Glendale, CA. I was sitting around the table with family friends, and realized how out of touch I was, with the customs, traditions, the language and etiquette. So, I quit everything, sold my stuff, and with my savings came to Armenia to volunteer, not sure how long, but I loved the place, and after one year of volunteering, I found work, and decided to call Armenia home. It was difficult for me, that Rubo didn’t believe my intentions, my reasons, but I guess how can a local understand the responsibility to continue a foreign cultural patriotism of a diasporan. I started questioning myself, and why, but I came up with no new answers. I know that I came out of curiosity and I stayed because I feel free here, there are many opportunities for me here, and I get to exist by with my own rules, outside of the social pressures, on the fringe, and I like it here.