"Russia, 1992, 1999, 2001, 2003 + "fly thru" 2004" Russia by Upstate1NY
Russia Travel Guide: 14,132 reviews and 35,674 photos
My first visit to Russia was in 1992 as part of a cultural exchange tour with a large music group, (both a chrous and an orchestra). My time in Moscow was rather "uneventful" in 1992, but the visit to St. Petersburg (just as it was getting it's name back!), for all that I was now exhausted, was the "tickel" that had to be "answered" by return visits in 1999 and 2001. Here I was in the middle of a city where I could walk 25 blocks in any direction and not see any building newer than 250 years old! The Alexander Monolith in Palace Square was a symbol of the era, the people and the country all "wrapped" into one.
Russia is a big country in MANY ways, not just size. It is VERY diverse culturally. With no one ethnic group a majority, every group is a "minority", so they learned to "get along" with each other. Stoic and emotionally "fiberously tough" took them through the Soviet era and brought them safely to "the other side". Their level of faith is amazing and heartening.
In 1999 I did a "home stay" and took Russian language lessons. I won't say Russian is easy, it has MANY rules, BUT unlike English THE RULES ARE RARELY BROKEN!! And when they are, THERE IS A RULE about how to do it correctly!!!
1999 included many hours in the Hermitage, walking around Nevsky Prospect and going to musical "events".
2001 saw me renting a car to tour outside the city, the summer Palace at Pushkin, Peterhof and Novgorod. In the city I again toured the Hermitage, plus I saw Romeo and Julet at the Marinsky Theater. My visit to Pushin was a "return trip" having seen it in 1992. The palace retoration is a masterpiece of Russian craftsmanship. The palace had been totally distroyed by the Nazi Armies in WW II.
Pushkin, Summer Palace of Catherine the Great. What a joy to see the way this has been restored. It had been reduced to rubble by the Nazi Army in WW II. To me this was evidence of even the Soviet "system's" interest in the cultural heritage of Russia, even if it did represent an era "put to death" by the revolution of 1917.
The Peter Paul Fortress, which was the basis for the founfing St. Petersburg, is being restored with all the love, care, talent and ingenuity that is so representitive of the "main stream" of Russia and Russian people. This photo is nearly my "best ever" of any place, while I can not reproduce the feelings I had at just "being there" for others, just look upon this as the sign of the depth of the faith of the Russian people, in themselves, in their history, in the God of Abraham. There is not enough space here to show all the beautiful resortation work done inside the church and for the entire fortress. GO THERE, that is the only way to truly apperciate the people "westerners" were encouraged to hate by propaganda "machines" years ago .
- Pros:WONDERFUL people, kind warm friendly but cautious
- Cons:OK, NOT every one was "wonderful", but 95% were, the other 5%, well, that is a different story
- In a nutshell:If I did not have so many attachments to "home" I could live there, even with the differences
Written Dec 21, 2005
The "Faith" of Russia
Written Jul 19, 2004
Russia, Faith 2, (survive, live, grow, enjoy)
Written Sep 25, 2004
Russia, signs of Faith with a vision of the future
Written Jul 20, 2004
Deeper in the heart of Russia faith still flows
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