Odessa Local Customs

  • Local Customs
    by arturowan
  • Local Customs
    by arturowan
  • Local Customs
    by arturowan

Most Recent Local Customs in Odessa

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    Guest Performances

    by hunterV Updated Mar 28, 2015

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    Guiest performances and concerts of Russian actors are not rare in Odessa and are attended by lots of people, both Odessans and the visitors of the city.
    This is the program of the performance I saw in November 2004:
    Intimate Life after Noel Coward presented by Mikhail Boyarsky and his theater in St.Petersburg. It was a great performance. The auduence broke into applause at the end and the spectators presented the actors with lots of flowers...
    Simply unforgettable!

    The cast of the play, Odessa, Ukraine
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    Theater Going Opportunities

    by hunterV Updated Mar 28, 2015

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    Theater going is very popular among the Odessans and the visitors of the city.
    There are several different theaters here:
    Ukrainian Musical and Drama Theater
    55 L.Paster Street
    Tel.: +38 048 223 55 66
    The performances usually start at 6 p.m.

    Mikhail Vodianoy Musical Comedy Theater
    3 Panteleimon Street
    Tel.: +38 048 225 09 24
    There are morning performances on weekends for kids that start at noon.
    Matinees, if any, start at 4 p.m. and evening performances begin at 6 p.m.

    Opera and Ballet Theater
    1 Chaikovsky Lane
    Tel.: +38 048 223 13 29
    There are morning performances on weekends for kids that start at 11 a.m. or at noon.
    Matinees, if any, start at 4 p.m. and evening performances begin at 7 p.m.
    You can also attend actors’ evenings where you can see a one-man show of a certain actor.

    Philharmonic Society
    15 Bunin Street
    Tel.: +38 048 225 69 03
    You can see different concerts or guest performances starting at 5 or 7 p.m.
    Odessa Symphony Orchestra gives concerts here starting at 6 p.m.
    Yumorina (Odessa Humor Festival) is also held here for five days starting at the end of March and lasting till early April.

    Ostrovsky Young Spectator’s Theater
    50 Greek Street
    Tel.: +38 048 222 48 51
    There are fairy tale performances for kids starting at 11 a.m., sometimes at noon or at 1 p.m.

    Welcome to Odessa!
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    Girls 0n The Street...

    by arturowan Updated Nov 13, 2014

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    0dessa is a city that has developed something of a reputation as a place you only go to, in order to pick up girls - an unfortunate image, as this always multi-cultural metropolis, deserves better than to be regarded as a location on the sex-tourist map...
    0dessa has a reputation for its beautiful young women, but to pretend they are all available & seeking foreign husbands, is an urban myth...
    Many are quite content in their native city, & I have even been told by native 0dessites, who spoke fluent English, that they could not live in any other city, even if the first language was Russian (which it is despite, the Ukrainian location & official signage...)
    0dessan girls are quite simply-minded, & only want to be well fed with a roof over their head & with a loving family; only some are serious about leaving their country for another culture, whatever their dreams...
    As mentioned in separate tips, the sex industry in 0dessa, does exist, but it is not blatant on the street - if you are seeking this sort of entertainment, you need to arrange it online...
    0dessa streets are full of working women, but they will mostly be occupied selling from kiosks or stalls...
    All sorts of wares will be available around the city - a centre of commerce if ever there was 1 - as it was always intended to be by Catherine the Great of Russia, whose idea it was to found 0dessa...
    Food & drink accounts for about half the street trade, but all sorts of goods are available for the seasonal visitor, such as cheap sunglasses, not to mention the tables of counterfeit DVD's...
    A female vendor is known as a 'prodavsheetsa', in Russian, & most of them are only speakers of that language (- if you cannot speak Russian, but wish to buy from them, the usual means of translation is via the screen of their mobile phone...)
    0dessa is known for the beauty of its women, who today reflect the multi-cultural origins of the original port-city, which was built by immigrant labourers from Italy, Germany, France, Bulgaria, Romania, & Turkey...
    However, no mention of the origins of the genetic pool which is unique to 0dessa, is complete without a men tion of its Jewish inhabitants...
    0dessa was once like a second Jewish Autonomous Region, when it was still part of the Soviet Union, & the many dark-haired, dark-eyed girls that remain, are proof of this...
    You will also see the rather rare combination of black hair & azure or jade eyes, which only occurs in those whose genetics originate from the area of Bulgaria & modern Moldova/Moldavia - only 100km from 0dessa itself...
    Walking the streets of 0dessa is always a pleasurable experience, once you have gotten used to the trip hazards & litter, because the native women are such a part of the surroundings...
    I could happily live there!
    But I went to art school; I see the world through the eyes of an artist, that is my excuse for loving the street life of 0dessa, & in the words of Louie Armstrong; "What a wonderful world it is..."
    If you tire of the sights on the streets of 0dessa, truly you are getting old!

    Sweet things aplenty in 0dessa... 0dessa - a city of :~) 's... Many locals are street vendors... Typical 0dessa street scene... A smile can sell a lot...
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    'de-ribas-ovskaya'...

    by arturowan Written Oct 18, 2014

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    Josif de Ribas-i-Boyons was born in Naples, 6th June 1749
    He was the son of the Spanish consul in Naples, who had an Irish wife, so it is only fitting that he should become the chief administrator of the building of this truly metropolitan city, that was the concept for the original 0dessa...
    After service in the Neapolitan army, he joined the Russian army in 1772 - in time to serve the last 2 years of the Russo-Turkish war...
    During the Russo-Turkish war of 1787 - 1792, Deribas was made the liasion between John Paul Jones & General Potyomkin (see separate tip...)
    In 1789, Deribas' grenadiers captured the village of Khadjibey, after the Turkish soldiers surrendered after only half-an-hour...
    The line in the Russian national anthem;
    "Let the thunder of victory sound!"
    Refers to the victory of the storming of the fortress at Izmail, in 1790
    This win, under the supreme command of General Aleksander Suvorov, was a plan of attack devised by Deribas, & the devastating victory cost the 0ttoman Empire its morale in the conflict...
    It would seem to have been an episode of fate, & inspired Deribas with the idea for a Russian port on the settlement, an idea he suggested to Catherine The Great, who history usually credits as having had the idea...
    It is thought that Deribas suggested the name 0dessus for the settlement that would be developed into 0dessa - the name feminised by Queen Catherine, after she passed the edict to be founded, 27th May 1794...
    Deribas was promoted to Rear Admiral & commander of the Black Sea Fleet in 1791, in recognition of his leadership qualities during the conflicts with Turkey...
    In 1795 he was made Vice Admiral, & full Admiral in 1796
    Deribas died, perhaps due to poisoning, in Saint Petersburg 2nd December 1800
    0dessa's central street, Deribasovskaya, is derived from his name in Russian; Yosip Mikhailovich Deribas...
    0olitsa Deribasovskaya is the now pedestrianised thoroughfare, which is still surfaced in the original cobbles, laid by the Italian master cobblers, over 2 centuries ago...
    Deribasovskaya is the street which receives about 90% of the attention in any travel guide to 0dessa, & is also the location where the annual Christmas tree is erected (see separate tip...)

    Deribas in 0dessa street art...
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    It's A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad, World...

    by arturowan Updated Oct 15, 2014

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    In 0dessa there are many sculptures & the significance of many of them will only be clear to a local..
    But 1 of the most significant to the city itself, but perhaps most easily overlooked & neglected, is the bronze chair on a red granite plinth, right in the centre of the City Garden (or 0stap Bender Square, as fans of the book prefer to call it...)
    '0stap Bender' roughly equates in Russian-speaking culture, to what 'Delboy Trotter' does in English...
    The chair is a tribute to the locally written satirical novel, 'Dvenattset Stoolev' - THE 12 CHAIRS, (which is also known as 'Babushkin Secret', when performed on tour by the Moscow State Circus, & has inspired similar tales, such as Arthur Conan Doyle's, Sherlock Holmes adventure, 'The 6 Napolean's', & I think had a little to do with the inspiration behind the 1963 film, 'It's A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad, World')...
    The plot centres upon a set up 12 chairs upholstered in English blue chintz, which have been split up, due to the Russian Revolution & the anti-gentry policies of the Bolsheviks...
    1 of these chairs has hidden in the cushion, a fortune in diamonds, & to track it down is the basis of the plot, that involves the strangely named book's hero - 0stap Sulayman Berta Maria Bender-Bey, who proclaims himself; 'the great combinator' - & his even more amusingly nicknamed, female sidekick, 'Pussy'...
    (Da, some humour is transferable from Russian into American-English...)
    Not only did Ilya Ilf & Yevgeny Petrov, set the scene leading into the adventure, within 0dessa, though changing its name to Chyornomorsk ('black sea') - they specifically set the plot at addresses on its many streets, such as Mala Arnautskaya, (where I once rented an apartment...)
    If your interest in 0dessa goes beyond passing tourism & has developed into a fascination for this enigmatic city, then The 12 Chairs is essential studying, not least because it paints a picture of the city as 1 built not on rock'n'roll, but counterfeiting & dodgy dealings, & this was written in 1928!
    Even more amazingly, all manuscripts at this time, were subject to censor from the Bolshevik committee concerned with public enlightenment & entertainment, & were only passing those propagandist to Bolshevist ideals...
    Yet, The 12 Chairs take an irreverent slant on the revolution & Russian culture, yet not only did the manuscript survive the censor, it was published, & to influence generations to come...
    Both authors tapped into a colourful vein, that is somehow the essential 0dessa, & has been for at least a century...

    0stap Bender (right) in street art...
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    0dessa Street Art...

    by arturowan Written Oct 15, 2014

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    0dessa is a city known for its art scene - there are sculptures all over the place, art galleries, & pictures for sale at craft markets on the street...
    However, there is increasingly more art, literally on the street - so-called 'grafitti art', although really it is too accomplished to be regarded as common grafitti...
    Much of it is celebratory of Ukrainian culture, or the culture of 0dessa, & might depict characters in local folklore, such as 0stap Bender, anti-hero of The 12 Chairs (see separate tip...)
    0n Mayday weekend, there is even a body art carnival, where models of noth gender are painted from head to foot, representing a specific theme, depicted by the artist on their skin...
    0dessa is not a city for those who stand still too long - if you do you might find yourself beneath a coat of paint...

    Symbol of Port 0dessa...

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    Eduard Gurvits...

    by arturowan Updated Sep 19, 2014

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    If you spend any sort of time in 0dessa & watch the local news channel, or pay attention to the street posters, or even grafitti, the name of Eduard Gurvits is sure to make an impression upon you...
    Repeatedly voted mayor of 0dessa, Gurvits' jovial face is often to be seen on local tv, in official capacity at all manor city ceremonies, be it the arrival of a new fleet of municipal ambulances, or opening a new public building, or attending a beauty pageant...
    Gurvits has an unmistakable face, which reflects less his Ukrainian nationality, than his Yiddish roots, which maybe makes him apposite as mayor of 0dessa, a city which, before the Nazi invasion, had a one-third Jewish population...
    By trade, he is a master construction foreman, having spent his years of graft, working on sites in 0dessa & nearby Moldova...
    Gurvits attended the Leningrad Engineering & Construction Institute, from which he graduated as an Engineer of Communications, then went to serve in the Strategic Rocket Forces of the Soviet army in 1971
    Gurvits was born in Mohyliv-Podilskiy, in Vinnitsiya 0bl'ast, on 30th January 1948 - into a Russian-Jewish family...
    He has a daughter & a son, who moved to Haifa, Israel...

    Mayor of 0dessa...

    Gurvits was elected Deputy to the Ukrainian parliament in April 1994
    In July he won the election to make him mayor of 0dessa, having become head of the 0dessa Zhovteny district committee in 1991
    Gurvits earnt the reputation as something of an entrepeneur, having set-up the 'Ekopolis' Experimental & Creative Studio, during the Soviet era...
    Gurvits earnt the wrath of Ukrainian President, Leonid Kuchma, when he attempted to make 0dessa a hub of the international oil trade, with a business plan for a direct pipeline to former Soviet, eastern states, & into western Europe...
    Kuchma, whose presidency was later brought-down amidst corruption charges, & links to the disappearances of several investigative journalists, represented the interests of the existing status quo...
    This has resulted in Ukrainian dependence on oil piped from Russia or Chechnya, bought from those newly made companies, benefiting only the oligarchs & organised crime...
    In order to scupper Gurvits' vision, which would have made 0dessa the economic centre of the former Soviet Union, & maybe even an autonomous centre of power, the March 1998 election results which re-elected the mayor, were declared void, & 0dessa was demoted as ruling city within its own 0bl'ast (region...)
    In the following months, 2 unsuccessful attempts were made to assasinate Gurvits, & 2 of his business associates were kidnapped; Igor Svoboda & Sergey Varlamov (whose body was not recovered until 2005)
    Gunned down in a hail of 19 bullets, was another victim of this ambitious business vision, its minder, who was Victor Kulivar, the 'officially-approved' gangster of 0dessa, (known in the local underworld as 'Karabas' - see separate article...)
    In the 2002 mayoral elections, he lost out to Rouslan Borisevich Bodelan, but was reinstated in 2005 when a court ruled that the previous result had been rigged - he was re-elected mayor of 0dessa in 2006
    Another unsuccessful business venture was to have 0dessa accepted as a host venue for EURO2012 - the president of the Ukrainian Football Association, later accused, "the 0dessa mayor prpomised much, but did little..."
    Despite his chequered career, & a 'facebook' campaign to discredit him from further election succees in 0dessa, which he lost in 2010 - Gurvits remains the friendly face of corporate culture in the port-city - a man whose co-operation any potential business prospector there, would do well in order to invite...

    Eduard Yosipovich Gurvits... Red flag city mayor... Eduard Gurvits - 'faith in 0dessa'... Grafitto = Gurvits 0ur Mayor... GURVITS - 'preserves traditions'...
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    'Karabas'...

    by arturowan Written Aug 20, 2014

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    If you stray off the beaten path, down Astrakina 0olitsa, & head for the steam room #4, you will find the unlikely scene of a memorial, because this was where a legend of the city was assasinated...
    A plaque on the wall, revealing the monotone portrait of a middle-aged man, with closely cropped hair, dressed in black jacket & top, reads in Russian;
    'Here - 21 IV 1997 - traitors did kill - KULIVAR - Viktor Pavlovich - Forever & alit memories about you - 'Karabas'. From friends & comrades...
    A matching plaque, separated from the portrait by a crucfix & a bowl of flowers, displays a candle, & a selection of verses dedicated to Karabas, from those who knew him...
    It is said that flowers are regularly placed at this shrine, with notes of cash inserted, which are not touched by those begging for change on the streets outside...
    Such is the legacy of a man who was THE head of the 0dessa underworld, at least until 21st April 1997
    19 bullets took out the man who enforced law & order the 0dessa/Russian way, which is a way few westerners seem capable to understand (try reading David Dimbleby's otherwise excellent study - RUSSIA...)
    You might consider me naive to think that when Karabas was 'taken out', 0dessa did not sigh a collective sigh of relief, because his assasins, who have never been identified, saved countless businesses his visits to inspect their accounts & extract his 10% commission for keeping their city with a 'krisha' (lid/roof) on crime...
    Karabas might have been operating a protection racket, but it was protection money well paid, because it kept the tourist centre of the city crimefree...
    It was the policy of Karabas to zone the city into areas where certain crimes were allowed, hence 0dessa downtown became 'Palermo' where the drugs deals were done, but if a supplier entered another part of the city, he was stepped-on...
    Whereas politicians & legitimate law enforcers create prohibition & blanket bans on crime, which only drive suppliers underground, the genius of Karabas was to segregate the competing criminals, & most importantly, keep them out of public view...
    In this way, the hoteliers & restauranteurs were able to operate without pushers & prostitutes on their doorsteps, & for keeping central 0dessa respectable, they were willing to pay Karabas his 10% 'fsyatka' ('take'...)
    I might be gullible to believe that Karabas was a hero of the city, & 0dessa is a culture where its own folk, & any passing artisan who has stayed in its streets, are romanticised & woven into its rich tapestry in a folklorish style, but I do believe that this gangster was respected in his own brief time...
    Legend has it he walked the streets wearing his black suit & T-shirt, unarmed, hence he could not defend his turf, that fateful day he was gunned down...
    Why was he targeted?
    This has not been officially explained, but it coincided with the initiative of 0dessa mayor, Eduard Gurvits, to transform the port-city economy, by building a pipeline direct into the eastern bloc oil-producing states (see separate article...)
    Although Gurvits did not (officially) approve of Karabas, it does demonstrate something of the gangsters' local reoutation, that he was approached to minder the projetc, which attracted the jealousy of the newly-enriched, Russian oligarchs, whose interests in Ukraine were represented by President Kuchma...
    Kuchma, who was later disempowered over corruption charges, had Gurvits de-instated as 0dessa mayor, then he lost the mayoral re-election, which was later found to be rigged...
    In the meantime, there were 2 attempts on Gurvits' life, & 2 of his business partners were abducted & were never seen again, alive...
    Karabas, an 'old-school' heavy, totally under-estimated the ambition of the Russian oligarchs with their private armies of heavies, toting machine guns & turning Yeltsin's post-Soviet Russia into 'the wild East', where the rule of law was administered by the presentation of a gun-barrel...
    Karabas was a product of isolationist, Soviet-thinking, whereas the world had moved on to the Reagan-Thatcherite vision of 'globalisation', & international crime had syndicated across borders...
    Karabas was THE MAN in 0dessa, but his position of authority curried no respect amongst the underground who were now effectually running neighbouring states, such as Bulgaria, Romania, & Russia...
    It might not please some folk to glorify a gangster, but 0dessa has a 'Robin Hood' attitude to such larger than life characters, & I am sure that Karabas would never have approved of the modern underworlsd vision for the port-city, as hub of the international slave trade (Asians imported into 0dessa for cheap labour, while girls from Moldova exported out, & sold into prostitution...)

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    Coffee Drinking Pleasure

    by hunterV Updated Jul 10, 2014

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    Coffee drinking is becoming more and more popular in Odessa.
    There are a lot of coffeehouses here, among them Cuba Café in Tiraspol Street (formerly Year 1905 Street) near Staroportofrankovskaya Street that was dedicated in 2007.
    The café has a unique atmosphere, excellent Illy coffee, the best capuccino in the city, and, of course, free Wi-Fi zone.

    Cuba Caf��, since 2007 Cuba Caf��, since 2007 By the excursion tram around Odessa
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    Odessa Humor Carnival

    by hunterV Updated Jul 10, 2014

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    Odessa Humor Carnival has been held there since 1973. Unlike all other cities of Ukraine, April Fool's Day is a day off in Odessa. Traditionally the Mayor of Odessa proclaims April 1 a day off. And, if it is a week day, it is transferred to the nearest Saturday. The holiday program starts at noon in Cathedral Square.
    Then April 1 Procession starts.
    It proceeds to: De Ribas Street - > Richelieu Street - > St.Panteleimon Street -> Kulikovo Field.
    The last stop of the Procession is the place where the evening gala concert takes place. At 6 p.m. there is usually an April 1 fireworks display.

    Odessa Humor Carnival 2006: www.amadey.biz The Carnival emblem @ Odessa Carnival @ Odessa Carnival Odessa Humor Carnival
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    What You Can Hear Only in Odessa

    by hunterV Updated Jul 10, 2014

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    Here are some anecdotes that I found in Passage magazine of Odessa. I have translated them for you!

    “Ivan,- a neighbor asks a neighbor,- you have such a big moustache, doesn’t it interfere with eating and drinking?”
    “Treat me and you will see”.
    ....................................................
    Sima shares her secrets with her neighbor Sonia.
    “Tell me, Sima, - Sonia asks,- has you husband ever found unfamiliar men in your wardrobe?”
    “Never. Everybody whom he found was his pal”.
    ...................................................
    A man and his wife are bathing at Langeron beach.
    “Look, Osya, you’re always by me. Are you afraid I may drown, dear? – the man's wife asks.
    “No, darling, but you have so much gold on you, I am afraid of loosing it”.
    ...................................................
    Two friends meet. One of them has a blue eye.
    “What’s happened?”
    “Do you remember that lady we saw the day before yesterday? You said she was a widow.”
    “Yes, I remember her well”.
    “So you should know you were wrong”.
    ..................................................
    Two ballet dancers are chatting behind the curtain after the performance.
    “Look, what’s wrong with Rita?” – one of them asks – She looks outraged”
    “She is upset she was given only fourteen bunches of roses”.
    “Fourteen bunches! Is that too little for her?!”
    “You see, she had paid for fifteen”.

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    Theater Going

    by hunterV Updated Jul 10, 2014

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    The Odessans and the visitors of the city have always loved going to the theaters of Odessa.
    The Opera and Ballet Theater is known all over the former Soviet Union countries.
    The Philharmonic Society often stages guest performances of different theaters.
    You can also attend a concert or a variety show there.
    I was lucky to attend a performance at both theaters and was very impressed by them.

    The hall of the Philharmonic Society, Odessa Opera and Ballet Theater Opera and Ballet Theater Welcome to Odessa! A view from Maritime Boulevard (Primorsky Blvd.)
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    Babooshka!

    by arturowan Updated Mar 3, 2014

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    'Babooshka' is 1 of the Russian words that most westerners know, maybe because Kate Bush once had a hit song of that title...
    (I know this is in Ukraine, but 0dessa remains a Russian-speaking city, & that is what everybody there calls a grandmother...)
    You cannot cross the border into Ukraine, without seeing the 'babooshki', & what a core part of the country these old ladies are...
    In the coutryside, they can be seen toiling in their gardens, or sitting on chairs outside their homes, hoping to supplement their meagre pension money by selling a bagload of apples or cucumbers to passers-by...
    In the cities they can be seen stooping in the streets in orange bibs, during the early hours, trying to make ends meet by sweeping up the leaves & litter...
    Many 'babooshki' have a hunched figure, & I think this is due to the amount of time they spend bending over with these short-handled brushes (- whyever are traditional Ukrainian brooms designed for use by dwarfs?)
    A 'babooshka' is easily identified, almost always wearing a traditional headscarf, often brightly coloured or decorated, with an apron, & 'varenki' (traditional felt boots...)
    Like most things in Ukraine, 'babooshki' have a reputation for being somewhat bi-polar - don't think because they're old ladies, they cannot hold their own, especially in an argument, or when pushing for the last place on public transport...
    It's not recommended to get in the way of a 'babooshka' at such fraught moments - many know how to literally throw their weight around, combined with shopping bags, to benefit their own ends...
    When I was visiting a home in 0dessa, 2 'babooshki' arrived, who did not like each other, & when they set eyes on each other, it was like a couple of banshee shrieking at each other...
    The first thing I noticed about the culture when I went to Ukraine, was how the people on the street all appear to be arguing, but in fact, they're just more expressive & volatile than what anybody in the west is accustomed to...
    A 'babooshka' might have a hardened glare for a stranger, but this will almost certainly melt into the sweetest, toothiest smile, if spoken to...
    It's even likely you'll be invited back to her home for tea & a feast, despite the fact the state pension is insufficiant to sustain herself upon...
    Ukrainian elderly folk are known to like to talk, even if you cannot understand a word they're saying!
    If you read the book, The Long Way Round, by Charley Boorman & Ewan McGregor, 1 of their experiences of entering Ukraine, is stopping in a village, where a 'babooshka' is keen to talk!
    Ewan McGregor does not know what she's saying to him, while she clasps his hands to hers, but is nonetheless touched by her sentiment...
    It's traditional in Russian-speaking culture, for the grandmother to take a full role in bringing up her grandchildren, & might even take over this duty in its entirety...
    I happen to think this might explain many of the problems in this culture, because I've seen for myself how 'babooshki' spoil & smother children, literally spoon-feeding babies, & without intervention, will insist on treating children as helpless babies, long after it's appropiate for their individual development...
    According to the statistics, 'babooshki' live a full 11years longer than their menfolk, but some can still be alive in their 90's...

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    PROTEST! (0r Publicity Stunt?)

    by arturowan Written Feb 21, 2014

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    0dessa is a city where a visitor might witness a political demonstration at any time of year, & this has been true of my visits, (before the troubles of 2013/14)
    Ukraine is a volatile place, & people usually do not hesitate to take to the streets to demonstrate their point of view, on all sorts of issues...
    If you've read my tip; Ukrainian Feminism, you'll know that I'm a touch cynical about some of these protests, which to my eye resemble compulsive publicity seeking, for those who want 'their 15 minutes of fame' on televised news...
    Ironically, a link began circulating on 'facebook', showing the action that had occurred in the main Ukrainian cities, but for 0dessa, where a man was shown sitting on his bed, drinking lager, while watching the demonstrations on tv...
    I say ironic, because soon after this link had circulated, I happened upon some photo's of 1 of the protests in 0dessa, & to my utter disbelief, who should be leading it & addressing the assembly beneath the Duc de Richelieu statue, but somebody I'd met on my third visit there (- in fact, he inspired another 1 of my tips on here - 'moodashlyopi'...)
    I say utter disbelief, because the protest was in daylight, & this person was in the habit of sleeping all day, while partying the night away on a cocktail of vodka & cannabis, & not doing much else in life...
    Yet, in the chaos that has become of Ukrainian politics, this rather irresponsible character, has suddenly been inspired to raise himself from the couchette in the home (not his), where he was 'crashing', & put his point of view across on television, (as if he really gave a 'govno'!)
    I know from a fact, from having met this character, that he could not care less about Ukrainian politics, but knows a good self-publicity opportunity when it presents itself...
    I do not wish to cast aspersions on the genuine protestors in Ukraine, of which there are legion, & though they may not all share the same political point of view, their reasons for protesting are sincere...
    However, do not be taken in by all of them - they're a mixed bag, so to speak, (& some have already been active during EUFA 2012 - flying Nazi regalia beside the Ukrainian flag...)
    In 0dessa, on the news, I've watched female students 'mooning' the television cameras, in order to protest 'feminism' - & now I see a 36 year-old who spends his life busy doing nothing, seeking election!
    Political protest?
    NO - publicity stunt...

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  • arturowan's Profile Photo

    A day in the life...

    by arturowan Updated Feb 19, 2014

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    Monday, 26th 0ctober 1987 - A Day in the Life of the Soviet Union - as recorded by TIME-LIFE photo-journalists throughout Russia & the satellite states around it's vast borders...
    No small project then, & of the 10 000's images that resulted from 100's of photographers, only a fraction could be published in the book that was published to illustrate this momentous, but atypical day of Soviet street life...
    0dessa receives only a few entries in the edited text, but in truth, it was such an interesting city, even in the midst of Cold war doom & gloom, it could have contributed an entire volume of images, warranting a publication devoted just to the port & street life, itself...
    The book was somehow prophetic, with the editorial desire to capture a culture that was in decline, as a result not so much of western competition, as the political policies of Mikhael Gorbachov...
    Gorbachov's policy of 'glasnost' - a word that cannot be accurately translated, but basically means; 'opening-up' - in respect to internal honesty as to how the Soviet Union was managed, or rather, mismanaged...
    Glasnost was the enemy-within for the USSR - within a few years of A Day In The Life 0f The Soviet Union being published in the west, the old order of totalitarian control behind 'the iron curtain', had collapsed, with political revolution within all the states that had constituted the union...
    I've been fascinated by A Day in the Life of the Soviet Union, ever since I first found the book, & now I've tracked down the unpublished photo's by Adnechka Grudinovker, on a webpage dedicated to the city...
    I've been using some of them to illustrate my travel tips on here, because it's extraordinary how so many of the images show scenes unchanged from when I was last in the city...
    Cars & lorries, which have altered so much in the west, appear no different at all!
    The most noticeable changes are the fashions worn by younger folk, & that Soviet streets had an absence of advertising, with Russian signing - something very different in 0dessa today...
    Here I have selected 5 images that I consider best reflect the nature of 0dessa as I saw the city when I was there, & were not much different from 2 decades before...

    A city of contrasting images... A city of Russian backdrop... A city of busy street life... A city of casual intercourse... A city of daysleepers...
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