Today was our main sight seeing day. We are waiting on a referral letter that allows us to travel to the city where our son’s institution is. We just learned this afternoon that it won’t be ready until tomorrow, but we didn’t know that when we started our day.
We left our apartment and headed down the hill to St. Michael’s cathedral. It is a famous landmark and close the river, that Brad wanted to see. It is a Russian Orthodox church and very beautiful outside and inside. I had to cover my head with the scarf when we sent inside because of local customs and we were not allowed to take any pictures inside. It was very dark inside...only lit by long thin candles that people placed in candelabras in front of different life sized icons or statues or Jesus or the various Saints. It was a little strange to us that there was a nativity scene where people laid money or fruit. It seemed almost like the Hindu temples I have seen in Asia.
We walked from one end of the city to the other today it felt like, visiting the river and walking down a path filled with handicraft vendors. There was a lady who was feeding stray cats under her stall...she must have had 6 or 7 kitties running up when she pulled out the food scraps for them!
We passed a restaurant that had a menu in English so we stopped in for lunch. We were pleasantly surprised by how good the food was. I had what was called Russian cabbage soup that was really saurkraut and ham soup in a tomato broth with sour cream and dill. Brad had chicken kiev with sautéed vegetables. It was a fillet of chicken wrapped around herbed butter that was battered and fried. They gave him bread to dip in the butter that was melted. Both were excellent even though they sound really strange. We ordered Ukrainian crepes with poppyseed filling for dessert. They were not terrible and very popular in Ukraine, but I would probably not order them again. They needed a lot more sugar in them!
We ended the day by buying a few souvenirs and then walking home. On the way home we found a supermarket where we bought cooked sausage (kind of like salami) and bread for dinner on the train. We were frozen solid at this point and Brad bought a coffee from on of the little espresso bar trucks they seem to have everywhere.
We are hoping to travel tomorrow night to our region. The delay is due to a computer crash that is hopefully resolved soon.