Published: June 14th 2011June 14th 2011
Church in Yaroslavl 1
I guess the Golden Ring can be described as churches, monasteries, churches, monasteries and probably some more churches :) The Golden Ring is made up of some of the oldest cities in Russia – Yaroslavl for example just celebrated its 1000 year existence in 2010. For this purpose Moscow freed up some money and invested in rebuilding churches, renovating buildings, … so Yaroslavl can boast with a neat and clean city center. Sometimes, however, these construction or renovation plans are not so well thought through. The new concert hall which was supposed to be built in Yaroslavl has a nice exterior, but apparently there is no more money for the interior [In the local magazine they just used a picture of the interior of the Moscow concert hall instead:)].
Nadia, my host, studied English and French – we had many interesting conversations about the Russian and Swiss mentality and given the importance of family in Russia marriage and kids are definitely reoccurring subjects. At the age of 25, girls are usually married and have kids or are at least expecting one. This is slowly [keeping in mind that the Soviet Union only broke up 20 years ago!] starting to change.
Church in Rostov
The fact that Russians tend to get married young however has also a different reason – there are clearly more women than men [I even researched the statistics: up to 65 years, the ratio is about 10:9, whereas after 65 years the ratio is 2:1 with an average life expectancy for men of roughly 63 years… crazy oder?], so once you did find one, you want to tie him to yourself by marriage and children. Obviously this cannot be generalized, but I guess there’s at least some truth in it.
Even though I read about the breakup of the Soviet Union and the distribution of apartments, etc., it is still different when someone tells it to you. Nadia’s uncle [not sure if it’s really her uncle, as Russians tend to call all male relatives uncles and female relatives aunts] for example lives in Riga. He used to live in Yaroslavl as well – he saw an ad in the newspaper of someone willing to exchange his apartment in Riga for an apartment in Yaroslavl – they deal was made and as of that moment he lived in Riga. The Soviet Union broke up and suddenly he lives in the
Me and the tiny bell
European Union and needs a visa to visit his home town, respectively his relatives need a visa to visit him .
After three good days in Yaroslavl, I took an overnight train to my next stop - Nizhny Novgorod.
There are more photos below