Wednesday, July 20, 2005

First Report From Ukraine -- Draft

I do not even know where to begin with my trip so far. At times it has been incredibly stressful but at others it has been nice. Svitlana and I did not expect there to be this much family obligation (the central cause of the stressful parts), but we have managed to escape the grasp of their hospitality at times. Our trip can be understood through the difference between the Ukrainian country and the city. Svitlana’s parents live in a typical Ukrainian village, which means they grow all of their own food and make it from scratch. It also means there is no running water or plumbing. I don’t care so much about these amenities, but when we are in the range of the family all freedom of action is lost. I hate the feeling that I have to bother somebody just to make myself a cup of coffee or eat breakfast. Svitlana is the same way.

Svitlana’s mother is a human factory. She wakes up at 6 AM and starts gathering food to make. She is working all day long. Svitlana does not approve of this lifestyle. When we do come to the city things are entirely different. We have the freedom to do whatever we want. There is absolutely no English spoken in the region of Ukraine where we are. Things have not changed much in a long time.

At this moment though we are in Lviv, probably the most modern city I have been in since coming to Ukraine. There is defiantly something of Ukraine lost in this modernization. Lviv is also the cultural center of Ukraine. Only Ukrainian is spoken here, whereas in Chernivsti it is only Russian. There are a lot of cultural things to keep in mind here.

I cannot really type a meaningful, well thought out and presented message under the time constraints of the internet café, so I will edit this post as time goes on.


Andrew Gabriel Rose said...

Watch out for Poles coming over from Wrocław to take back their old houses. Jesus you're close to Poland. Gonna check that shit out?

B. Kriplur said...

Unfortunately, no. I can hop across borders with the greatest ease, but Svitlana’s passport is not as versatile as mine.