Ukraine

Kiev, Ukraine before the revolution

(Last Updated On: 26/11/2018)
It took me a long time to visit Ukraine. Even if this is the neighbor country, the closest one from where I live, my first trip there happened in April 2012 when I flew for a long weekend to visit Kiev. And it was a love at first sights! I’ve never expected Ukrainian capital to be such a beautiful city with a vibrant atmosphere. Everywhere there were so many people walking around, older couples, young families with kids, groups of teenager friends. I had an instant feeling the life is good in Kiev.


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The architecture of the city blown me away too. The golden domed orthodox churches were outstanding and the interior was the richest and the most beautiful I’ve ever seen. Every time I stepped into yet another holy place in Kiev my jaw dropped and I was standing speechless, trying to remember every possible detail (a hopeless case). Then there was a Soviet architecture at its best examples – the monumental buildings of Khreshchatyk street, the enormous Independence Square with sculptures reminding of the glory of Ukraine. My days in Kiev were spent curiously exploring the city that immediately fascinated me big time and falling in love with it. How could I not know before it’s so wonderful place with such a rich history?

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So when things started going bad in Ukraine recently I anxiously watched every news, followed life coverage and felt devastated. Devastated because of the events there and how the government treated the people who just wanted to fight for their rights and devastated for the city so beautiful yet so destroyed. I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw pictures of the Independence Square turned into a war zone or beautiful churches turned into the field hospitals. It all just looked and felt unreal. I couldn’t understand how such horrible things can be happening so close, just across the border and in such a beautiful place… These last few days of fights in Kiev were heart breaking for me. I was worried about my friends who live there but also for people I’ve never met who were bravely fighting and sadly many didn’t survive this fight. For most of the time when I read news tears just came to my eyes and I couldn’t stop them at all. I was wondering how I’d behave in such situation and I can only hope I would have been so brave too. I have a good life in Poland and just 1000kms east people my age or even younger die for their country. This is so not right! Everyone here, including me, tried to support Ukraine, even if only by spreading the word to the world about the situation there or giving out food/medicine to be sent to Kiev but it still felt not enough yet we couldn’t do anything more. Now, even with the events in Crimea, I truly hope and wish for Ukraine to find the new, peaceful days ahead and for Ukrainian people to be smart enough to avoid the wrong way again.  It’s just terrible that people don’t learn from the history, that the world has already dealt with such situation previously yet it had to happen again… But when it happens so close the tragedy and how pointless it is hits you even more!

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I’m going to Kiev in April as my flights to/from Kyrgyzstan leave from there, I might be going there in June as well (during my trip to Kharkiv). I’ll defnitely head to the center then, to see how the Independence Square and surroundings look like after the revolution, to light the candle in St Michael’s Golden Domed Monastery where the temporary hospital used to be, to shred a tear at the recent tragic history of this incredible city.

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If you think of visiting Ukraine or just want to read more about the country take a look what else I wrote about it!

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2 Comments

  • Reply
    Alex
    13/06/2015 at 12:34

    Hi Kami, we are loving your posts from Ukraine and Eastern Europe! We went to Kiev during the revolution actually and it was really interesting to see the barricades and all the camps set up by the soldiers and the buildings with bullet holes :O – I think it’s much better there now though. We’re moving to Lviv soon, so I’m reading everything you wrote about it :) :)

    • Reply
      kami
      19/06/2015 at 23:46

      Thank you for your nice words Alex! I can imagine how interesting and touching it must have been to visit Kiev in this terrible time! I’m planning to return there ever since but there’s always something going on. But I will make it there soon! Lviv is pretty amazing! It’s one of my favourite cities ever and I’m sure you will enjoy living there big time! :)

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