Privet From Kyiv Again – Ukraine 2011

Privet from Kyiv again,

Victor Yanukovich, the Ukrainian president, wishes a Happy New Year to all Ukrainians. Hopefully, it will be better than the last one. But Ukrainians are not so optimistic.  Many young people would like to leave the country and each month it seems there are more pensioners and veterans who beg on the streets.

Victor Yanukovich, the Ukrainian president, wishes a Happy New Year.

It’s warm and raining and lamb’s tails are sold on the streets. And we’re only in the middle of January. There was a little snow left on the hill of the Park of Eternal Glory last week. A few teenagers tobogganed under a twenty-one meter obelisk tower which is over the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.  These kids hope that the snow will continue; winter is no fun without snow.  I also hope it will snow before the 19 of January, which is the day in of the festival of the Epiphany which would be much better with snow.

Park of Eternal Glory, Kyiv

Mikhaylina Kotsyubinskaya, the Ukrainian patriot, literacy critic and the fighter for the Ukrainian language died. She was 79 years old. Friends and colleagues gathered to say goodbye to her on January 11th at Teacher’s House. Yulia Tymo-shenko came too. Then a mass was held at the church and then the last goodbye took place at the cemetery.

Former prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko came to say he last goodbye to Mikhaylina Kotsyubinskaya.

The last goodbye at the cemetery

At the House of Teacher’s a letter of condolences was read. It was full of appreciation for   Mikhaylina Kotsyubinskaya’s work, appreciation for her fight for the Ukrainian language and culture and much more. I do not remember all as it was quite long. The letter was signed by Victor Yanukovich. As the letter was read, the hall rustled uncomfortably and some people screamed “shame”.  I was shocked too. It is true that Yanukovich lobbied in Ukrainian language during the presidential elections, but his first presidential speech was in Russian.  One might suppose that Michajlina was turning in her grave.

I went to the village of Buyarka on an overcrowded train. It was terrible, we were packed like sardines so I thank God, Buyarka is just five stops from Kyiv. While there I visited three young girls who opened a business with horses. They have eight of them, and if you would like to learn how to ride a horse or just have a ride, then Buyarka is the place to go, but perhaps in summer, when it will be more pleasant.

The horses had to be brushed, their ankles tightened and then we could ride.

The horses had to be brushed, their ankles tightened and then we could ride to the field.  Those of us who joined the activities on foot had to run after the horses. It was very windy and we were freezing even though it wasn’t below zero.

If you would like to learn how to ride a horse or just have a ride, then Buyarka is the place to go.

Riding a horse in the village of Buyarka.

I should mention I have started a new photographing project called Living Rooms.  Here are some images I photographed so far:

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