The sable dark of the night speckled randomly with the warm glitter of bulbs in the houses climbing the steep hillsides... all that background charged with a clothes-line tout 'a bend' (though sagging a bit under the gross weight of the hung out washing)... The view is available at nights from the queue at the "Suicide's Waterhead", looks like the most fit coat of arms for this here town.
About ten in the morning, the homely glow from the blockstone heater next to my desk in the Renderer's was cut off by another blackout. Poor me, cold is a thing I fear most badly. Rendering of an article full of heated patrioticy made me no warmer.
During the break, to start my spree of X-shopping I bought a book of science fiction for Sahtik.
A small crowd gathered near the Mayor Hall to admire a light tank manned with a native crew loading up an oblong box with, presumably, ammunition. Someone in the crowd called me by my name. It was Gago of the Sarushen village. Surprised to see me. He thought I had left long ago.
'Are you a resident spy, after all?' asked he with a grin.
I updated him on my getting a job and inquired if he had risen to the rank of Major among phedayeesPHEDAYEE —
(Armenian borrowing from Greek) "freedom fighter". . We parted with a handshake.
At the Renderers',Ahlya the Typist came to share her bleakest, terror-dripping, apprehensions. She had never sinned, nor breached any law, nor participated in the movement for Karabakh independence. And now, irrespective of so cautious a lifestyle, both she and her children were gravely endangered. Deadly. Constantly. What a horrible nondiscrimination! It's so unfair. Who would defend them now without the Soviet Army down here?
I tried to comfort her with a piece of Persian history.
At four pm the personnel was sent home and the Editorial House locked. My intention to go on with the X-mas shopping fell short in view of huge padlocks on all of the shops. Yet, the tiny shop next door to our place happened to be open. There I bought a black belt for Roozahna, which luxiery item knocked me back for 27 monets.
The evening was spent assembling the X-mass tree. The pine limb I picked up yesterday yielded enough spare parts for the construction. Now it's decorated and placed upon the bookcase partitioning our one-but-spacious room into two.
There are two socks under the the tree left by Roozahna and Ahshaut. The sock from Ahshaut contains three walnuts wrapped in silver paper while he himself sleeps in his cot.
The other sock is crammed with the black belt for Roozahna to find it in the morning when she comes back from the Underground.
It's ten past ten pm. An artillery blast banged in the upper part of the town.
Merry Christmas to all.