Here’s a friend I met today:
Today, we asked Lydia how to see some of the countryside of Ukraine. She and her husband invited us to accompany them on a trip to her village. Overall, the countryside in this area appears very flat, with black soil that is good for growing crops — from wheat to cherry trees.
Today was a special holiday when people visit the cemeteries where their loved ones are buried. People bring flowers and food treats to put on the graves. Lydia told us that gypsies come and take the food after, and sure enough, we saw some people come and take the treats before we even left. Normally, people sit and picnic around the graves, but it was rainy and muddy, so we didn’t stay long. Even so, the colors of the flowers were vibrant.
After our visit to the village, we drove further south to a place called Kamennaya mogila, which means “stone tomb” in English. It is a religious site with ancient cave paintings that may have origins as old as the 20th century B.C. It was fun to explore, meet new friends (see video above), and have a picnic lunch there. Before returning to our hotel, we visited a beautiful city park. It reminded me of Boston, with swans in the river. My favorite part was seeing a bridge where lovers attach locks and throw the key into the river to bind their love forever.