By the time Christmas rolled around we have developed a good camaraderie with our labmates Nare, Astghik and Hayk, and were enjoying working with them and Tigran. They had taken a lot of time out of their schedules to work with us, so we thought it would be nice to have them over. We picked Christmas Eve because we wouldn't be celebrating Christmas with our families and Christmas isn't celebrated in Armenia until New Year's. So, we prepared what I think was a pretty darn good meal considering we didn't necessarily have access to the foods we would typically cook with.
Matt made a really good beef dish, though I don't remember the cut, and he mixed it with onions and I think garlic and put it all in a pot lined with lavash (YUM!). Lavash is a very thin bread that most closely resembles a tortilla, but not really. It's very thin, and comes in strips about two feet long and six inches wide.
Because we had about ten people to feed and we had very limited space in the kitchen I made a quick pasta dish. As it turns out I made way more than we needed, so I ended up taking it to the lab the next day and we ate the rest for lunch. Even if it wasn't the best food I was still happy I could bring something because we had been provided lunch every single day! Hayk brought this very interesting drink called tan. It's apparently made from yogurt that has been fermented and then diluted. To me it just tasted like really salty Alka Seltzer. In other words it didn't tango with my taste buds. I stuck with the really good Armenian wines.
Tigran's grandson sang for us. He's a good singer. I sang one or two Christmas songs, and we then proceeded to do the normal party thing, a little dancing, and a lot of drinking. It made understanding each other much easier!