Saturday, October 22, 2011

October 13, 2011 Public Transit System Adventures!

Today was a fun day!
Exciting and a bit nerve wracking at the same time!
Our morning started out with breakfast with the lovely Svetta and her hubby Yurie.
Svetta had to go into Kiev to work today so we decided we'd venture out with her and figure out how to get to and from the house using the public transit system.

I'm almost ashamed to admit I've rarely used public transportation back home.
Of course, I have a car back home so it's not really that necessary for us there.

We must leave the house at about 10 after 8 to walk about 10 -15 minutes from the house to the bus station around the corner.
It is COLD so we walk very briskly to warm ourselves up.
Let me tell you my face and lips have been so chapped this trip with all the bitter cold winds.

We made it to the bus stop just in time!
Not a minute to spare!
We were walking up and saw the bus pulling off to leave!
We ran the last few steps to catch it before it left us.

It is a quaint little yellow bus with curtains inside.
There is a clerk that rides next to the driver who gets up and goes back and forth throughout the bus to collect payment for the ride.
It is a very inexpensive way to travel.
It cost us 5 gryvna to go from a town about 30 minutes away to Kiev. 
That is equal to about $0.63 per person.
 Here is a picture of Svetta and I on the bus into Kiev.

Riding the bus is much less stressful than riding in a car in this traffic for some reason.
I can relax much more and not worry as much.
Not sure why but I'm good with it.

After about 30 minutes we had arrived at the Metro Station. 
This is basically a mix of a train and a subway. 
It goes underground at points and is above ground and even over water at points.

At this Metro Station there are a bunch of vendors set up there that is called a "Bazaar".
It seemed to be endless!
We'll have to check this out soon!
It seems to be like a flea market as we call it in Oklahoma. 

Here's a picture of the type of bus we were on. 

Here's a picture of the Metro.
This thing goes FAST!

It is also a VERY popular mode of transportation!

I mean, the crowds are overwhelming!
It is seriously packed at all times!
I was trying to capture a picture of the mounds of people that were making their way up the escalator to the outside of the Metro and caught an officer in the crossfire of my camera lense.
I think he realized I wasn't trying to take his picture and was ok after the fact.

We spent the day in Kiev with a few friends.
Our friends from church back home had just arrived in Kiev to do their adoption and so we met up with them for a bit and enjoyed visiting.

After a while Jake and Ashley called us back to say they were headed out and about Kiev and we should meet up.  We met up with them after some confusion on which  McDonalds to meet at - there are two almost across the street from each other.
Even closer than any in America!

We went around town and explored the underground mall with them as they searched for gifts to take home to friends and family.

Turns out when we needed to head back to meet Svetta to catch the Metro and bus back home they were headed to their afternoon visit.
We all had to go to the same stop and so we caught the Metro together.
Svetta was kind enough to snap this picture of the four of us on the Metro.

There is a really neat thing that happens on the Metro.
At least I think so.
There are many people that do business on the metro.
For example this guy...
He was going from car to car with his buddy playing the guitar and the according for tips.
It is neat to see things like this!
Here he is in the next car.
The one in the Red hoodie :) 

We got off the Metro and were headed to the bus and along the way there were many street vendors with everything you could imagine for sale.
This was a fruit stand.
Good stuff!

We got home and was sure to note the bus number we needed to catch to go back and forth so we could venture out alone if need be.

When we arrived at the house, Yurie was outside working in the yard.

I suppose Bryan was in need of doing some work.
You know, other than the emotionally exhausting and physically draining work we've been doing here. LOL
So, he took the mower from Yurie and got to work.
This did not make Yurie happy or Svetta either.
We were guests and were not to work.
This didn't matter to Bryan, he continued.
So, after a bit, Yurie gave up and worked on something else as Bryan  mowed the yard.

While they worked, Svetta showed me around the property.

I got to meet the guard dog, Lorg.
He is MASSIVE and has a really mean bark! 

I got to taste some home grown grapes straight from the vine.
Boy, were those things tart!
They had such vibrant purple juice that stained my hands I they reminded me of blueberries!
Svetta uses these to make her own juice and jellies.

We also walked around back and she showed me her garden where she grows most all of the vegetables they use for eating.
They have a potato farm about 3 hours away that keeps them stocked on fresh potatoes.
She made us homemade mashed potatoes almost every dinner.
It was fabulous!

As you can imagine, this day wore us out..
Here's the love of my life, passed out on the couch.

Excited to see my girl tomorrow!

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