Extending stay in Ukraine – 2009 World Tour Progress Report

[Original post by Elliot Mogerman – Transferred from yahoogroups.com]

Mike has to renew his registration and since there is no overnight mail here we will be staying a few extra days. Yesterday rained again so we dropped off our motorcycles at bmw for a full service and maintenenace. This way we will have everything ready for the hard ride through the next 3 months. I forgot to mention at that border of the land in dispute country, not a country we found out, one of the guards thought mike was charlie borman. A few years ago ewin mcgregor and his friend charlie went on a bmw bike trip similar to our called long way round. And turned into several more documentatires, etc. Well because of our bikes, and outfits he thought mike was famous and thats why we think they tried bribing us so long. Just a hunch. Anyway, the traffic here is insane, worse than anything i have seen since my bus tour in france with my parents. Here although illegal cars will even jump onto the sidewalk despite pedestrians to try and get around the traffic when its at a standstill. So crazy. All the food out here has some sort of pickling or dill in everything. I guess russians think cucumbers is a solve all food. Like windex in the my big fat greek wedding movie. So at night, we went out with our british friends at the hostel. Out of these three guys two of them teach in russia and have been a valuable resource on some issues we were told wrong information about. So now we can be better prepared. We ended up at an irish pub drinking stella because they were out of ukranian beer and when they closed we went to an underground bar and had a few more. This morning when out to breakfast and we will all hit the town again tonight. Not many people out except us. And now we have a game to try and make people smile. Everyone here doesn’t smile. They think if you smile and are happy for no reason it makes you an idiot or stupid. So we have been walking around with big grins on our faces and smiling at people trying to make them smile back. I think today we saw one teenager smiling walking in the train station. Yes thousands of people walking by us and not anything more than that. I will need a haircut soon, but not sure if i will do the ukraine barber shop, or have mike shave my head. It will be easy and cheaper to take care of. Or perhaps just let it grow out andf keep it messy. One of my many hard questions of this trip. The last one was what beer i can’t read should i order. 🙂 lol

When we were drinking with the brits the evening developed into a joke telling fiesta. Myself and one other gent just went off on a tangent and told every funny short joke not leaving much out of political correctness and even continued a little into today. Holy techno! Even old ladies in their flower shops jam out to techno. Lots of metro guys out here. Like worse than scottsdale. Really the founders of metro. We walked all over town today taking some nice pics and then decided to try and take a boat tour around the city. When trying to take a shortcut, because we didn’t want to walk the long way around a forrest area, we found a trail that led the right direction. Well it turned into a little adventure. Wearing our sandals and dress shoes ended up hiking down pretty steep grades of dirt hills, loose rocks, and even one gent slid down on his bum because he was nervous about falling, and eventually made it to our destination. Which we just drank on a flotel next to the tour boat area and decided to do it tomorrow.