The Velvet Revolution
November 22, 2003
Dear readers, and you too, Kay,
Several of you have asked about the safety of my brother Clif and his wife Mary Neal, who are spending six months in Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia. (Mary Neal is the one who has been giving us superb fiber arts reportage from central Asia, if you’re joining us late. She is also a rabid fan of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and Nine Inch Nails.)
Anybody watching CNN today may have seen the scenes of protesters storming Parliament in Tbilisi. Hubbo awoke me this morning with a cheerful, “They’re storming the Parliament in Tbilisi–watch this,” and sure enough, it looked just like a revolution. Alarming. Well, it took me about eight minutes to figure out that I should call Clif to hear his voice.
The utter miracle of cell phones meant that I dialed him up, and one ring later I was talking with him. Characteristically cheerful and cool as the other side of the pillow, he said they are safe, fine, and that the embassy folks suggested they lay low and stay home today. Clif said he was going to behave, but I didn’t believe for a second that he could resist getting a taste of a genuwine overthrow. See their blog Living with Caucasians for their first-hand account of an extraordinary, amazing day.
Love to you all, and remember: that whole country has risen up in search of freedom. Pretty spectacular. Would you storm Parliament if your elections were corrupt?