We have made some Ukrainian friends. When Santa came to visit our house, his angel spoke English and called us a few days after to invite us to visit the water with them. Last Sunday, they took us to the hot springs. It was VERY cold that day! People go to the springs for health and sit in the waters to get rid of all their aches and pains (see videos). The kids had a great time being close to the water again. On the way to the sea, there were several stands set up selling fish. They were all dried and salted and hanging from a string. They bought us a string of fish so we had something to eat with our beer later (I don't know...fish that has been hanging outside for weeks?!).
On the car ride home, the couple (Tamara and Nicoli) continued to ask us several personal questions that we would normally never answer...but had no problem answering in this country. How much does Zenon make, how much do we pay for for our house, electric, gas, cars, taxes, why are we adopting Ruslan, etc.? All the most personal questions. From what we have read, Ukrainians have NO problems asking these questions. We were asked the same questions last time we were here. Of course we down played the responses a bit. I mean, the average salary here is less than a $1000 a month. We had no problem spending half of that outfitting our outer winter clothes for the trip here! We continued to compare costs of things and remembered how expensive life is in North America.
We invited them to dinner and asked them to take us to their favorite restaurant. Last night we went to Russian house. We had a traditional Ukrainian dish of potatoes, boiled steak and cheesy sauce. I don't like potatoes, only like my steak on the barbecue, but I ate it anyway. It wasn't to bad, actually. She ordered wine, something we don't drink here because the wine here is awful. It wasn't bad last night, but this morning I feel terrible. And I only had one glass!
After dinner, the music and dancing started. As it turns out, they brought us to a dance place. I noticed a stage, but didn't think twice about it. It was for the singer! They have live singing every night (where was the band?). I kept looking at him wondering why he was slightly "stiff" while singing and then I noticed the computer screen in front of him....Brianna and Rita are going to like this one....he was reading the lyrics from a screen! It was karaoke! Awesome! No, we didn't sing. It wasn't really like that. He was the star of the show and didn't ask if anyone else wanted to sing. He did have a great voice. Voss was having a great time dancing. He was checking out the girls in the really short skirts who were there for a birthday party. I think him and Kent need to go out on the town one night. Maybe when he is ten.