Sunday, July 29, 2012

Odessa is the final stop in Ukraine it is known as "Pearl of the Black Sea". The city has a definite Russian feel (more than the other places).  We headed towards the Potemkin Steps to meet up with our neighbors Scott and Carrie Mezvinsky from the Baxter Condos who have flown down from Moscow to meet us for the weekend.  What a treat!

Potemkin Steps

Patrick and Scott

Mandy and Carrie


We thought the boys ordered this for us:)

Lots of weddings in this town

If you look at this statue a certain way it could create a giggle

View of the city

Big Ol' Baby Statue

Cute Couple

Catacombs Tour

School room

Time for cocktails!

One of my favorite restaurants...Dasha meaning summer house

Everything in Russia must be stamped...apparently this menu was approved by Russia

Jewish Museum

Literally in someones house

Not kidding this was the front

Small courtyard in front of the museum

Lviv Handmade Chocolates made everything better

Group shot!

That is better:)


Thursday, July 26, 2012

Yalta is a town of about 90,000 but the only industry is tourism.  It had a Euro Myrtle Beach feel.

We visited the White Palace in Livadia, the former summer palace of Czar Nicholas II and the site where Churchill, Stalin, and Roosevelt met in 1945 to determine the shape of post-World War II Europe.  During the conference they went through 5000 bottles of wine, 6300 bottles of beer, and 1/2 ton of caviar. Roosevelt predicted that the solutions arrived at the conference would last 50 years and he was only 5 years off (making him a pretty good politician).

Pit stop at a random castle

It was beautiful

Denim Huggies making a comeback!

Front of the palace (nice summer home)

After lunch we went to Massandnra Winery (biggest in the country). The winery mostly makes dessert wines because of the climate and also have the most Grand Prix awards (an award for wine).  A wine bottle from 1775 is being sold for $170,000.  There are three levels of wine, ordinary-stored for one year, fine wine-stored for a year and a half, and collection-no less than five years.
Check out all that wine!

Apparently the more dust the better...


Time for a tasting

These are the ones we tasted

The winery

This bus made me laugh

That truck was full of wine!

Bye bye, I will miss you:)

Now, to drive the point that we were the youngest on the boat here is a pic of our dinner table "regulars"
Patrick, Mandy, Hill (73), Edna (91), Heather (72), Jack (92), JD , and Vicky

Hill liked to party!

Sevastopol Day 2

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

We left Sevastopol and hit the Bakhchisari which is the former capital of the Crimean Peninsula during Ottoman Rule. We went to Khan's palace and while the flowers were beautiful the palace was less than stellar (I just expected more).
Beautiful rose garden

Description of the palace

Pretty flowers

The entrance was made by an Italian architect  in 1503 

Dasha means "summer place"


Before the tour started Demetri (our tour guide) told us that Churchill came to visit here and drank many beers causing him to have to go to the WC or Winston Churchill.

Characters from Lomonosov: 
Today we had lunch with Georgia and David from baton rouge Louisiana. She was southern and sweet and he really did not bring much to the table.

After lunch we went to Balaklava which is a region that has been described in the Odyssey and site of the famous "Charge of the Light Brigade" during the Crimean War. We visited the Crimean War Panorama and visited submarine tunnels.
Outside out the Panorama 

Took 3 years to paint and then destroyed and took another 3 years. Saw the "first" nurse in the picture Sasha Sevastopolskya or the first Russian Sister of Mercy

We made it to the submarine storage (I was a little checked out at this point).

Left over missile just left in the corner

The tunnels were made with curves...pretty smart.

We love the Cat Effects App

Last night in Sevastopol...so fun!