How can I possibly begin to describe our trip to Kiev? It was a place I never thought I would go but now is a place I will be returning too. In summer, and once I learn some Russian and Ukrainian. The language learning is going to begin after Christmas. the going back? I hope not too far in the future.
By the final morning in Kiev, I learned how to make a pretty good cup of coffee
and how to translate the english remotes to the Ukrainian on the TV.
Finally figuring out how to work the tv was a huge step. Huge.)
Kiev is a city of construction.
I've never seen more cranes in my life. The recent financial crisis hit hard and everything stopped, but things are starting to slowly pick up again.
It is an international centre, and there is a money around. See the fantastic building with the domes in the background? Apartment and condos. We were wondering how much the top floors would cost. Chanel and La Perla and all the stores that I would have to go to Toronto or Montreal to see are all over in the downtown centre. If you felt the need for a Starbucks and Macdonalds, they aren't all that far away.
It is a city of contrasts. Very new, very old, and a lot of in between. Though it isn't recommended that tourists go on the metro, we did. We were advised to ixnay on the english speaking, don't look people in eyes and hold everything close. And yet, once you get off the metro and on to the busses, the behaviour is quite different. Cooperative in an unexpected way, one that if we tried it here...Truthfully that adventure is worth one whole post of its own.
As you go down every street, every little place the sidewalk is wide enough for it, a market of sorts pop up. It isn't really allowed but no one stops it. Some places the vendors set up nice little shops. People with vegetables, clothing, fruit, jewelery sell all your needs on the street side.
It seemed as we traveled over the world, we stirred storms in our wake. Cross the US and they got hit hard. Cross Europe, and the same. By the time we made it to Kiev, our weather mojo made it miserable, but in a very Canadian way. Dry light fluffy snow and about 8 to 10 inches and cold with sharp winds meant that cars and cabs slowed down, but nothing really stopped.
Weather not withstanding, everything went forward wonderfully. The wedding was amazing and will be a post. Feasting will be a whole post. People will be a whole post.
There will be many more pictures.