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Armenians in Quarantine: 20 Ways to Get Hye

By Christopher Atamian

Special to the Mirror-Spectator

Tired of being cooped up in your apartment or suburban home? Watched every “Will and Grace” and “CSI Miami” rerun? Made fudge brownies a dozen times and re-alphabetized your life? Even jogging outdoors can get a wee bit creepy when there’s no one else to run by or tip your proverbial hat to. So here are 20 suggestions for things to do during COVID-19 that will bring you closer to your inner Armenian:

  • The hills are alive with the sound of music: learn a few Armenian folk songs. Brighten up isolation by practicing them in the shower. If you have a deep — or shrill-operatic voice, you may impress the neighbors:

Go to: www.armeniansongbook.com and www.haykakanmusic.com

  • Be bookish. Read Abovian’s Verk Hayasdani (The Wounds of Armenia), the first novel ever written in Armenian:

Go to: https://www.amazon.com/Wounds-Armenia-Lamentation-Historical-Language/dp/160444052X

If you are monolingual and don’t read Armenian, then try Rupen Janbazian’s wonderful translation of Andranik Tzarukian’s Letter From Yerevan:

Go to: www.amazon.com/Letter-Yerevan-Andranik-Tzarukian/dp/1727508459

  • Boo! So what if Halloween if months away: make ghapama! You have to do something with all those nuts and dried fruit that you’ve squirreled away! Buy a pumpkin, hollow it out, fill it up. Simply delish. This guy does it with an Armenian-Australian accent: www.youtube.com/watch?v=nU7vtBK085E

  • Wonder at the matchless beauty of Paradjanov’s “The Color of Pomegranates.”

Go to: https://video.search.yahoo.com/yhs/search?fr=yhs-dcola-   005&hsimp=yhs-005&hspart=dcola&p=watch+the+color+of+pomegranates#id=2&vid=5de2ed6192b87cda76149e46f1fa62b4&action=click

Robert Guedigian
  • Test your linguistic skills by taking an Armenian Language class at the AGBU’s Armenian Virtual College: Go to: www.avc-agbu.org
  • Make a list of five things you love about being Armenian — share on line and have your social media buddies add on to it!
  • Single and looking? Join an Armenian dating site and keep the flame alive. Virtual dating is all the rage! Visit https://hyesingles.com/
  • Get some religion: listen to the Armenian liturgy and watch services on line, from the comfort of your living room. Go to: https://armenianchurch.us/
  • Be a Patron of the Arts: find an Armenian artist that you really like and purchase a favorite work — here’s one! See www.lindaganjian.net
  • Re-connect: pick an Armenian relative or friend that you haven’t spoken to in a while and communicate via phone or social media.
Atom Egoyan
  • Try your hand at writing: compose a text in Armenia or a story in English with an Armenian theme. Send it to a few magazines and voilà — you may soon be a published author!
  • And last but not least, sit the family down for a peaceful shish kebab dinner: have a fine Areniwine, complain a lot and make someone feel guilty. Make sure you interject a few amans, oofs and djanigs! Start Again. Have fun!


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