All right, yesterday's post was expressive and emotional and was more about viewing than reading. But I feel like going to share the current situation here.
I am finally at home. My train was scheduled to arrive at 7:35 am, but it was an hour and 35 minutes late. We have many night trains in Ukraine, especially now and especially between Kyiv and the west of the country. This is partly because the territory of Ukraine stretches from west to east for 1316 km and from north to south for 893 km. And partly because the condition of the rails is not good enough to start a speedy train. That's why their journeys are long.
I wanted to save a little on tickets, so I took a cheaper ticket there and a more expensive one back. The ticket class was the same, but different carriages - old and new, so the price differed by 2 times. The new carriage was much quieter. Another undeniable advantage is the fact that it has a bio toilet (like in an airplane) and it works throughout the trip. In old cars, the toilets are closed on the approach to the stop and for some time after it, and this is very inconvenient, since there are 2 toilets and 36 passengers.
I almost never sleep on trains. Although today was quite quiet. At night I almost fell asleep when the train stopped. I don't know if it was the station, but it stood for a long time. Several trains rushed past with such a roar that I was very frightened. So, I didn't manage to sleep, but I'm already used to it.
My hubby Nick was supposed to meet me and help with the baggage. When he was already at Kyiv Central, we were told that the train is going to be late. It turned out that all the trains were late that morning, but mine was the record holder. Then we stood for a long time in traffic jams unusual for Kyiv. Already at home, I checked the news. It turned out that Kyiv is expecting the arrival of high-ranking persons, whose names have not yet been mentioned. Everyone's guessing. Blinken? Biden? Also, the Israeli delegation arrived.
At this point, we know it is Joe Biden. It is reported that he arrived by train.👆👆👆 I called Nick and said - how could you not notice the president of the United States while waiting for me at the station for 2 hours? 😂
But seriously, Biden's visit today is the news on everyone's lips.
Today is a Memorial Day in Ukraine. Exactly 9 years ago, on February 20, 2014, more than 200 protesters were injured in the central part of Kyiv, 49 of them died. These were the first heroes of the Heavenly Hundred.
I then worked in the government quarter and saw everything with my own eyes from the window. I will always remember those terrible days. Then I thought that it couldn't get any worse. Just like a year ago, I did not believe that Russia would openly attack Ukraine.
Oh, by the way, my company announced an informal meeting of colleagues this Friday, February 24th. 😬 It will be exactly one year. I don't know how I feel about this, but I want to see colleagues. I'm tired of constant tension, fear and waiting. Waiting for massive shelling, a Russian offensive, a nuclear strike. I know it's not over, but everyone need something good that will support their living.
We are in news every day. Even my mom listen to youtube video about tanks with an interest. My podcast list is mostly about military stuff, and some phycological.
A few words about my hometown and the west in general.
At first glance, it seems that there is no war. No military equipment can be seen on the streets, and there are few soldiers. Missiles arrive here very rarely. In Lviv, the curfew does not start at 23, but at 00. Alcohol is allowed to be sold two hours longer than in Kyiv. Despite the curfew, you can call a taxi at night, and there are generally quite a lot of cars in the streets. I don't like it when laws don't work or don't work for everyone. If the need has disappeared, then this law should be repealed, not violated.
I visited my hairdresser. I go there since I started to dye my hair. My hairdresser's husband died in December on the east, in Mariinka. He was under 40 y.o. and he was extremely handsome, tall, and strong. A very beautiful couple who wanted children so badly. 🥺 She stays on quite well, work help her to go through grieve.
Another hairdresser's husband became a well-known volunteer who delivers cars for the military. He run a bike business before war. But they have 2 sons, and tlas a parenth they don't want their sons to go to war in the future.
A few new murals appeared on the buildings. This one depicts the most famous Ukrainian poet Taras Shevchenko wearing modern AFU uniform and holding NLAW (Next Generation Light Anti-tank Weapon). He had the ability to see the future of Ukraine and Russia. Some of his poems became prophetic.
Walking through the pedestrian part of the city, I saw nearby street musicians, and a little further away, recently installed portraits of soldiers who died in the war with Russia.
Despite the visible normality, people keep responding to the needs of the military. The gym where my daughter works held a promotion on the anniversary of its opening. All proceeds for that day will be transferred to the needs of the army.
You may remember that I together with Kharkiv volunteers were collecting cargo for a military hospital in the Kharkiv region. They are in great need of men's underwear, especially t-shirts, as well as rubber slippers. And also detergents and mattresses.
Here in Kyiv, we collected 4 large boxes for them. Some of the underwear was provided by my hubby's colleagues, some were collected by the staff of the cosmetology clinic. I bought rubber shoes. Volunteers from Kharkiv yesterday overcame a very difficult path in their sedan, swamp, ice and snowfall. But the cargo was delivered to the hospital.
In addition, we are searching a transport company that will offer a good price for delivering the aid from Holten to Kharkiv that our friends from the Netherlands have collected. It's about 5 tons, and any help is greatly appreciated! 💖
In case you didn't hear, there are no more blackouts or scheduled cut-offs of the power In Ukraine. Gloomy and dark days are fewer and fewer, and the sun shines more often. Spring is coming!