Finally - the Black Sea

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Europe » Ukraine
June 4th 2012
Published: June 21st 2017
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Geo: 44.5144, 34.1757

We had a good last day in Kiev before our train left, first to the Bulgakov museum (writer of The White Guard and the writer involved with Stalin in The Collaborators) in the house he lived in and in which some of his plays were set just below St Andrews church. Then we walked round and round looking for the. Chernobyl museum, only to find we had walked past it twice... and it was closed on Sunday!
So then a quick metro ride to visit another historic church where we found a massive congregation inside and outside celebrating pentecost all clutching armfuls of greenery (plant greenery) which seems to be an essential part of pentecost (whit sunday) here.
Then to our train and our compartment for two where we were hugely entertained by our attendant, who provides tea and biscuits and such like. This was an attractive young lady and every time we ran into the language problems she let out a delicious peal of laughter.
16 hours on the train and we got down at Simferopol, in the centre of the Crimea, at 9am and onto a minibus to Yalta, though we hadn't gone a hundred metres and the police pulled us over and spent the next half hour or so giving the driver a hard time and a ticket though I couldn't see what he had done wrong.
Obvious that the climate is different from Kiev, sunny and warm, and that we had moved from a city to a seaside resort, and from a friendly little ten room hotel to an 1100 room behemoth full of Russians. We are on the 11th floor with an excellent view of the sea and the adjacent derelict or unfinished buildings,,, Monaco it isn't!
Still, the hotel has decent swimming in salt water pools and is a twenty minute stroll into the middle of yalta where we joined the milling throng for a promenade and a beer and booked ourselves onto a tour of the palaces, Russian language of course, you go a long way here before finding any other English tourists, though there is a group of Americans in the hotel.

And otber than a qhick meal by the sea at Batumi almost three weeks ago this is fhe first sight of the black sea, wbich of course is not black, as you will see when photos get uploaded,tomorrow?


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