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Published: July 28th 2018
One of the large houses
We arrived in Krasnoyarsk about 10am on Friday. We were met and immediately taken off for a city tour. Unfortunately the weather had turned and it was misty, grey and threatening rain. We drove into the city centre and the main square, where predictably there was a theatre .There were some intersting "dancing" fountains which were amusing a lone small child in the centre of the square. To the left we were told to look at the clock tower. This was described as Krasnoyarsk's Big Ben. On the side of the square was another fountain which would hve been very pretty, but it was undegoing repair and restoration. This depicted the local rivers as maidens and the god of the river in the front accepting his guardianship. At the bottom was also a statue to Anton Chekhov which I had to see.
From there we drove down to the river. Our guide, Helen, was very good and explained the local history and topography. Down by the river we parked and went walking. It was still raining lightly so I was glad of my coat and umbrella. We stopped in front of a statue of a horse which represents all the
Dancing fountains in the main square
wild ponies of the Siberian plain. Further along, sheltered under a bridge we could see people dressed in National costume. This was our surprise. A folkloric group consisting of mainly over 60 year olds were dressed in national costume and greeted us with vodka and bread. Soon the Italian and Brazilian mobs joined us. The folkloric group sang and danced and put on a great show, while we warmed ourselves by downing a couple of glasses of vodka and eating their delicious bread. Our last stop was at the local War Memorial and Museum. This was fascinating. While Siberia was not invaded during WW2 many of its young men joined the Russian forces fighting the Germans and there is an interesting collection of artefacts and information at this museum. Outside there is a guatrd of young cadets which honour the site and many relics of the war are housed here. Fletcher was particularly impressed by the display of tanks and mobile artillery outside.
From there we went to the Hilton hotel where they had reserved day rooms for us if we wanted to shower. Fletcher, Elizabeth and I did not bother and went straight to the dining room where
War memorial statue
lunch was being served. This was a buffet so we could choose what we wanted. We relaxed there over good food and a bottle of wine.From there it was back to the station and reboarding of the train, We sped on, heading for Irkutsk and beyond. At 5pm we recovened in the dining car for our second Russian lesson. This was accompanied with cakes and pancakes which softened the concentration. We learnt some more useful phrases but I will need to keep my cheat sheets with me to fully communicate!!
Dinner was at 8pm and we joined Elizabeth in the dining room. The meal was as good as usual and we had some white wine. Olga told us that tonight there would be a disco in our dining car after dinner. We decided to stay on and join in the fun. The majority of our carriage are Brazilian or Spanish speakers. When the music started it had a Latin American flavour. However, Fletcher and I could not resist and to many whistles and cheers we ventured onto the dance floor. Over the next two hours we enjoyed the wine, the dancing and the obvious enjoyment and camaraderie of our
One of the fountain statues
fellow passengers as the train sped determinedly into the night. A fun time,.
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