Tag Archives: Kiev

No Radiation but a Sombre Historic Moment Nonetheless – Kiev (Part 2)

Today should of been the day when we were gonna throw it back to Chernobyl, by now we should of somehow realised that nowt ever goes right for us, as despite having emailed the hostel 3 days in advance to book it for us (and the government require 3 days advance notice to sort out your documents etc) they didn’t reply until a day later when it was too late. Factoring in our as yet unresolved cash flow crisis this was probably for the best. So over a spot of breakfast and beers in the hostel we decided the only thing for it was to head into Maidan Square to soak up the aftermath of an historic event – how often is history happening right up close to you, like an onion?

Now being experts at the Kyiv Metro Location Unit, we jumped on the metro for the two stops to Maidan and headed up the infinite escalator, quite unsure as to what we would find at the top. The metro emerged slap bang in the middle of the protesters encampment – a desolated square, covered in khaki tents with fires on the go, banners with patriotic slogans and Ukrainian flags, huge barricades of debris, tyres and burned out vehicles, the charred remains once-grand international bank headquarters and literally MOUNTAINS of flowers and candles for the people killed during the most violent couple of days of the riots. Words can’t describe the atmosphere – it was very sombre and triumphant at the same time. Someone we met later that day summed the feeling up very well – “We have won our freedom, but the cost was very high.” Continue Reading

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Helmets on Fire (Terraced House!), Street Drinking, Absinthe and Mini Giant Kiev Island Police Station – Kiev, Ukraine (Part One).

We arrived at Kiev with the bouquet intact where we resisted the harassing offers of taxis into town (with the aid of our cunningly scribed hand dictionaries) and decided instead to make our own way on the little old rickety mini bus that took about an hour to get to the train station. From there, our hostel had given us directions of the various Metros we needed, so we (upon finally locating the underground station and having a quick beer next to it – after Lithuania’s non-street drinking/no kiosks with booze on the street corner, we were very relieved to find the streets packed with little shacks selling cheap booze for the thirsty traveler) we bought tokens for the metro and attempted to put what we thought were the tokens into the turnstile, only for it to spit them out and the security man shouted at us until we sussed out that we were actually putting our loose change into there instead of the plastic tokens. Michael Bayed that right up like! We then descended down into what seemed like the core of the earth on the massive escalators and pushed our way onto the packed Metro, trying to perfect our non-standing out, dour Eastern European demeanour of not smiling at anyone when making eye contact.
Put the rest of this in your face