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Published: June 21st 2017
Geo: 47.0167, 28.8497
Saturday finished with our nigbt at the opera. La Boheme sung in italian with russian surtitles, or were they ukranian? A beautiful and historic opera house, but not a world class company. An enjoyable evening though,, partly down to the performance and partly to the people watching.
With a few hours to fill before Liz went off for her flight to Warsaw, first leg of her trip home, we had a good breakfast, dropped into the cathedral to see what was happening to find a service in progress in a clean bright white and gold space, then a last walk through the town back to the hotel and. then Liz into a taxi to the airport
I had more time to fill before my train so I went to the archaelogical museum, lots of stuff from the 8th to 1st century BC settlements on the shores of the Black Sea (Olbia and others) and some of it nicely displayed with English and Russian labels and information, but other stuff including Egyptian mummies in dismal surroundings with no English.
Then to get a better photo of the Potemkin Steps, which involved climbing up them which earned me a beer, quite a
few English football fans being loudly obscene at the same place.
And so to my train. I knew that while this was an international train it wouldn't be luxurious, and how I underestimated how not luxurious it would be. First I had to find track (read platform) 10. Only 1 to 9 seemed to be available but the board said 10. In the end a policeman led me, past track 9, out of the station and down the street.
And there stood this poor excuse for a train. Only four wagons, all filthy inside and out, three with wooden seats and one with padded - but thst one much more crowded and all stiflingly hot having sat in the sun for hours.
So I distributed myself across a wooden seat and endured a fairly depressing five hours, lots of it standing still. This train passes through another 'break away' area - Transfer Dniester between Ukraine and Moldova. The transdnistrien people don't seem to bother with checking passports and stuff so it all takes longer when we are finally inspected by Moldovan officials.
Very rural, but lots of old hardware scattered about which made me wonder what it had all been
Liz in a chair - the 12th chair
Story by Ilf and Petrov ,Odessan authors
for when it was new. So eventually to Chisinau, capital of Moldova, where I received a text from Liz telling me she was still at Warsaw airport waiting for a much delayed flight, and Sebastian now moved up from collecting Liz from the tube, to going out to the airport.
Tomorrow I get a tour of part of Moldova.
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