Independence Square - site of our 2 kiev apts. and protests
the last couple of meals before i left for kiev, we wandered off the beaten path and had to make due without an engleeskee menu. i spent some time trying to translate using my poclet dictionary but really only got as far as the headings. when we went out with the delaware couple, scott could recognize chicken kiev, chicken cutlet, and french fries, so he'd point to a couple of those and held up 3 fingers and that's what he, his wife, and I had. since sig likes to eat just about anything (and you really can't go wrong here - except i'm afraid of mystery meat) he just points to something on the menu and waits to see what shows up. so far he's done very well.
i'm back in kiev (or kyiv which is the new interntional spelling) now and on my own until the translator and driver pick me in up the a.m. for my exit adoption appointment with the u.s. embassy. today is a religious holiday in ukraine and maybe memorial day? so the embassy - which celebrates both country's holidays - is closed. there's one americanskee in kyiv experience i haven't had yet, which is dinner at TGIFriday's. a good number of americans congregate there, including adopting couples. it could be an interesting experience, but i'm not sure if i want to give up one more really great ukrainian meal. i did walk thru a mcdonald's and sig got me a carry-out coffee from there for mother's day, so i can cross that off the list. those are the only two american restaurants i've seen here, and probably the only two in the city that offer carry-out food aside from food stands on the street.
my latest apartment here has a/c - quite a luxury for us. it's becoming more common, but nothing like it is back home. at first when we arrived here, i was reticent about leaving our apartment windows open. screens here are unusual and none of the places we've stayed have had them (hence the cottonwood storm.) i kept thinking a pigeon would fly into the apartment and how the heck would we get it out? our translator assured me he doesn't know of that happening, but anyway staying here alone i feel alot better cooling the apt. down with a/c.
international flights from kyiv leave later in the day so since i don't have a direct flight, i need to overnite somewhere, and it was my good luck that the route that was available included an overnite in vienna. i hope it's not raining so i can walk the city a bit. i have directions to the original julius mienl (some of you have been to the wunderbar imported cafe at southport and addison) so i hope to find it. i'm practicing "vo ist julius mienl, bitte?" those of you (M,D, shelley, laura, kulandas) who remember my intense airticket search may find it as amazing as i do that the ticket i originally booked ended up being the exact date i need, leaving just enough cushion in case there's a fire drill at the embassy.
on the political front, the demonstrators have vacated independence square and it's again lined with souvenier tables. maybe the resolution of a sept. 30th election date is enough to quiet things for the moment. thanks for the emails good to know you're there and reading - didn't know about the posting password. i'll continue posting from home with sig and kola updates and more i haven't had a chance to say while i'm here:) paka, bb