The Quest for Уха: A Peace Corps Tale

Earlier this week I mentioned to my director that I would like to take Friday off and have a three day weekend since the weekend before I worked on Saturday and Sunday for our MyVoice project. She agreed and I immediately starter to search for something to do on my extra day off. Luckily, my host family offered to take me fishing at a nearby village.  I did not expect to have cold water up to my shoulders when I heard we were going fishing but that is what I got.

We drove up to my host family’s property which is in a small village about 30 minutes outside of Kovel. I knew they had a pond. I could not but help think about our family’s cabin in America and all the hours my brothers and I spent fishing at our pond. This was a little different. First of all, we did not go directly for the rods. We ate and went for the homemade vodka and assortment of food. I was thinking to myself while we ate… When will I be able to grab a pole and get to some peace and quiet.


After we finished our meal I was definitely feeling good and ready for some fishin. I looked at the faces on the faces of my host father and his friends as they looked at the cloudy sky as if they wanted not to fish. I thought, whats the big deal? We can just put jackets on if it is a little cold. Then, they pulled out this large net. I was confused. I was starting to understand the worried stares at the gray sky and the need for towels. The large net was our pole. The first words out of my mouth, “that’s kind of cheating, isn’t it?”

I sat by scarcely helping along the way as we worked as a team to drag the long net across the pond floor time and time again. After about 30 minutes I got the hang of this system of finishing and began to contribute more and more to the process. Finally, I felt the sense of the good old day and pictured my brothers badgering me. I imagined their taunts, “get in the water you big woosy.” In that moment I told our team that I wanted to get in the water and play the key role of dragging the net. It was as advertised, cold and slippery. But, a great experience I will never forget! What else can I say other than, “the уха was worth it.”


*These are the thoughts of Richard J. Roman and are not those of the Peace Corps or its affiliates.

One thought on “The Quest for Уха: A Peace Corps Tale

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