Three weeks in the Republic of Georgia: by Cadet Kati Eller-Reese
Our CLUP group spend three weeks in the Republic of Georgia.
On Sunday, June 10, we had the chance to visit a new city. Batumi is a seaside city on the Black Sea coast and capital of Adjara in Southwest Georgia. This city is sometimes called Georgia’s second capital and also serves a major port for the country. The adventure into Batumi was extremely exciting and very much needed after a long week of training in the mountains.
While in the city we were allowed to go explore the different shops, and sights the city had to offer. It was such a beautiful city. Batumi was completely different from where the mountaineering school is located. There were botanical gardens, aquariums, and even a casino.
After our sightseeing we loaded our bus and traveled to an amazing restaurant called the Riviera. The restaurant over looked the Black Sea and while there we were given the opportunity to take part in a long lived Georgian tradition called a Supra. A supra is a traditional Georgian feast and an important part of Georgian social culture. Regardless of size and type, a supra is always led by a Tamada, or toastmaster, who introduces each toast during the feast.
Our Tamada was Capt. Vano, the head instructor for the Basic Mountaineering Course. Vano gave six main toast during this meal; a toast to God, to Peace, to friendships between Georgian and U.S. persons, to the fallen soldiers, friends and family, to the those of us who are alive and well, and lastly to God again for all that he has done for us.
Other cadets were allowed to give toast during this time. The feast was filled with impressive cuisine from the Georgian culture. The chance to take part in this Supra was by far the best part of our trip, moral was at an all time high. We all learned something about the Georgian culture and bonded with not only each other but the instructors as well. We are making lifelong friendships here in Georgia.
submitted by on Jun 12 2012 from ArmyStrongStories.com