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Saturday, June 06, 2015

Pawlina in Lviv

Lviv is considered the "Paris of Eastern Europe" ... it is also somewhat reminiscent of Vienna. It's a city that is hard not to love, and it's wonderful to be back here.

My apologies for the gap in posting updates here on the blog. It's been an incredible, intensely busy time since the moment I stepped onto Ukrainian soil!

There is much to tell you about what transpired in Kyiv, and that will come a bit later. I have tons of notes and footage to process first! But I thought I should let you know that I'm safe and sound in Lviv.

It was a bit of a traumatic time getting here. Just before we boarded the train in Kyiv, I discovered my wallet had been stolen out of my purse... probably while navigating the steps down to the train. Boo!! Stupidly, I had all my cash in the wallet as well as my driver's license, my Blue Cross & Care Card, and a couple of credit cards. Needless to say that did not get the day off to a very good start!

But, it could have been a lot worse. Although life is more or less normal outside the war zone, people in this country do get abducted, tortured, and killed, I'm just out those few things. Plus, I am not alone. I have been lent cash and many shoulders to cry on. And, I have my passport, So apart from feeling very stupid for being so careless with my wallet, I'm having the time of my life on this trip.

During the seminar in Kyiv and Friday here in Lviv I was crazy-busy on site taking notes, photos and audio-visual recordings. The seminar is over now and I am getting a chance to start to process some of it before the next crazy phase on this trip.

Today (Saturday) was a "catch-up" day so I slept in a bit and did some shopping and wandering around downtown Lviv.

Sunday evening we head back to Kyiv, then Monday we take the train for an overnight trip to Dnipropetrivsk where will will tour the world's largest Jewish cultural institution.

Meanwhile, here are some street scenes from beautiful Lviv, in western Ukraine.

Street scene - Площа Ринок (Market Square) 
It is not uncommon to see a strip of вишивання (traditional embroidery patterns) on cars in Ukraine these days.

Saw this on the boulevard on the way to the "art market" ...
a vehicle from the war zone 
Apple Strudel and tea - outside patio of the Atlas Restaurant
Menu at the Fresco restaurant .. check out "Ukrainian abundance" ... apparently it is not a joke after all!
My lunch Saturday at the Fresco restaurant ... Lemko varennyky (perogies). Basic filling of
potato, cottage cheese and onion, but dough made of whole wheat instead of white flour. Tasty! 
Tram train for tourists.

A spiffy new trolley bus ... brand new.

Street scene ... musicians on bench playing traditional folk songs.
One of many streetside patios.

Saw this army vehicle on the big central boulevard on the way to the art market behind the Opera House.
Another stark reminder that this is a country at war. 
Gorgeous knicknacks at the art market.
Another popular item in Ukraine these days. (Look closely at the face on the toilet paper.)
Street scene from the patio of the Atlas restaurant.


iluvpysanky said...

Hi, Paulette. I'm enjoying your blog. Your latest event harkened me back to 2 separate occasions when I lost my passport. I was just talking about it yesterday, and then your story . . . . Once was in London and the other in Brisbane. Both times a good samaritan turned it in to the authorities who tracked me down. Your photos are lovely and show that you are having a fabulous experience, despite your wallet situation. The good thing is that it things can only get better from here. All the best.

Victor said...

I love Lviv very much. Thanks for your photos!

Unknown said...

Cool trip Aunt Paulette! Keep the posts and photo's coming! Don't sweat the stolen wallet, all part of the experience. I would expect in a period of unrest, like Ukraine is experiencing, pick pocketing would be a very common occurrence. Pick pocketing is an art form and some of them are real pro's. Nothing to beat yourself up over. You will be even more aware of your environment now which will give you a better experience as you explore the country. Stay safe but don't be to safe and miss out on something.

Penelope Notes said...

Some of your images are like a breath of fresh air. Thank you for sharing your journey and insights. These pictures and your commentary give hope that normalcy and beauty still does exist somewhere in the Ukraine. I am sorry about the wallet though.

Pawlina said...

Yes Penelope ... indeed there is normalcy and beauty in Ukraine. Pretty much everywhere except where Putin's hounds are wreaking ruin.

Thanks for your comment and glad you are enjoying my blog!

Pawlina said...

Thanks Joan ... and so nice to hear from you! Yes despite my little misfortune I am having the time of my life here. :)

Pawlina said...

What's not to love about Lviv, Victor? :)

It was a wonderful visit, but way too short!

Pawlina said...

Hey Riley ... cool that you are following my blog! I've been finding a few silver linings in the cloud my pickpocket left in exchange for my wallet. Still wish I had it tho. LOL

It is a very cool trip tho and so the experience didn't put too big a damper on things. Having a wonderful time. :)

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