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I am Sandra - faithful steward. listener. shepherd. dream believer. hard worker. collects brass bells, boots. Jesus follower. contented. star gazer. homemaker. farmer. prayer warrior. country woman. reader. traveler. writer. homebody. living life large.

Saturday, September 03, 2011


  ~  Ukraine border ~
We crossed the Tisza River on the Friendship Bridge and I took this quick photo but unbeknowest to the border guards. In every country, border guards frown upon photos at the border and my traveling companions were uneasy with me doing this but I was sneaky quick. Er, maybe that is sneaky quick.
~ going to the hayfield ~
All over Eastern Europe hay harvest is still done by hand and the entire family pitches in to help.
~ Ukraine village ~
Romania is beautiful but Ukraine seemed even more beautiful; at least, to my eye. It seemed lighter and cleaner even though the roads were dreadful. I'm used to mountain roads but my traveling companions are not and they were appalled at road conditions. We would travel for miles on what I call washbasin roads...gravel, dust and bumpity bumpity meaning the vehicle had to slow down to twenty miles, or less, per hour.
~ logging trucks, dirt roads...just like home ~
~ potatoes need milk...right? ~
Cows wandered freely and drivers had to watch out, constantly, so someone's livelihood wasn't injured or killed. It made the drive so much more interesting!
~ chewing cud ~
Cows, sheep, goats and other animals have four compartments to their stomachs and are able to chew their cud or ruminate.  These two bossies reminded me of females the world over who gather to "chew their cud" and catch up on "news", otherwise known as
The first town we stayed at in Ukraine was Kocib and while there, visited the large market. Flea markets are the same all over the can buy any and everything if you know where to look and who to ask and is why we stayed in Kocib and not Kolomiya, which we only visited. Most of the people on this trip are of Slovakian or Czech heritage and are "Kroj Chasers" term...and most of this trip was spent searching out local, vintage dress now called costumes. Most of the time it was funny but other times it was just downright exasperating watching some run to and fro, absolutely terrified someone would get something and best was absolutely insane!... in my humble opinion.
~ in the market ~
Did you think I could leave out the sweet faces? -smile-
~ embroidered linen shirt ~
This gentleman has on an example of kroj. His linen shirt is handmade and hand embroidered and he said he had about four more at home that are similar. He doesn't know just how close he came to being stripped naked and handed a few coins for his shirt...close call, Sir, and you, perhaps, don't even know.
In Kolomiya we visited the Pysanka Museum, aka Easter Egg Museum, as well as an ethnographic museum. I also spent some pleasurable time sitting at a cafe, drinking Staropramen and people watching. A litre of beer, quality draft Staropramen, cost 9 Hryvnia which was about $1.25...bliss! Ahhhh...if only Dave had been with me; Staropramen is our favorite beer.
~ Pysanka Museum ~
~ bride and groom ~
During the course of one afternoon, I saw half dozen, perhaps more, weddings. The wedding party would parade through the streets going from there to somewhere else, presumably to party. 
~ ooh la la! ~
There's more, much more, but this will have to do for now. It's past time for me to do chores and I'm burning daylight. I'll leave you with one more photo and with the promise, should you wish me to, to continue the travelogue next week.
~ market day fini ~
Blessings ~ people, we're all God's children ~ weddings ~ Pysanka Museum ~ markets ~ korj ~ Staropramen ~ cattle ~ mountain roads ~ Friendship Bridge ~


  1. I enjoyed reading your post!!!
    And the photos!!! It's so funny to see those cows...but I am sure it wasn't so funny for the drivers....
    I have never seen such an embroidered linen shirt! It's beautiful!!! I just love the sweet faces! Thank you for sharing with us!

  2. I super enjoyed the the cows. And about the flea market thing...that is why I quit going to estate sales...everyone was just so grabby...afraid they were going to miss out on day I just thought to myself.."I just don't need anything that bad"..and it seems like it is the same all over..

  3. How exciting! I just love reading your updates. The cows are adorable, and they do indeed look like they are gossiping. :)

  4. Hello Sandra and Dave:
    We have not yet plucked up courage to go over the Ukrainian border, but your post has reignited our desire to do so.

    Your photographs capture a way of life and a landscape relatively unchanged for decades and so outstandingly beautiful. We can still remember our first visit into the countryside of the Czech Republic where we saw people in the light of a golden evening scything the hay by hand and that beautiful image has stayed with us ever since.

  5. I have enjoyed reading your travel posts. So interesting to see this part of eastern Europe. Storks nests, the farm wagons, cutting hay, the clothes, etc...

  6. Sandra, your photos & stories are just wonderful. You truly captured the countryside & the people so beautifully. It is a far different world than what we are accustomed ... thank you for sharing, my friend.

    Hope you have a beautiful holiday weekend
    TTFN ~
    Hugs & love,

  7. What a beautiful post, as always. I feel like I missed much of your trip, so I'll have to get caught up here. Lovely photos! Thank you for sharing with us folks who 'don't get out much' ;) It's greatly appreciated! -Tammy

  8. Your pictures are stunning. Really makes me miss Eastern Europe. Are you over jet lag?


  9. I've loved following your trip and your pictures are always wonderful. I took a psanky class once and it was so much fun. Kind of like opening a Christmas present at the end when everything is covered up and you start removing all the wax. We hosted a Ukraian archery coach during the Olympics here and the embroidered things he brought for us were amazingly beautiful. Life was/is so hard over there though - alot of corruption in the larger cities - we sent packages but I'm almost sure they never got there. When they see postmarks from the US they always assume whatever it is contains money or valuables. So sad - we were unable to stay in touch after he went back. And at the time he made the equivalent of $24 a month teaching archery for Olympic contenders.

  10. Inspiring photos and wonderful commentary. Love the photos of the man and woman -- their faces speak of many years of toil and struggle. :)

  11. I think I love your pictures of faces the most. You have so many amazing pictures Sandra, but truly, your lenses show a love and appreciation of the human face.

    The last photo moves me too...


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