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Союзівка і Львів

29 May, 2016

Thoughts on travel… and maybe a little crushing on Slava. Just a little.

I’m going back to Soyuzivka (Suzy-Q) for the Ukrainian Heritage Festival. This will be my 3rd trip and I’m actually staying for ALL of Saturday. Generally, I go in the morning and leave during the afternoon break. It’s about 4 hours from my home to the resort, and I’ve never wanted to stay the entire time. It’s a wee bit of overload for me - Suzy-Q was somewhere my grandparents went, somewhere I’ve always connected with my mother even though we’d never gone there together. Emotionally, it’s hard, so very hard to be there, but I’ll go any way and think about what might have been.

There’s always a bunch of dance troupes, and a bandera musician, and then the most popular Ukrainian musicians they can afford to bring in. We’ll never see Океан Ельзи there.

By the way, if you haven’t heard their new album, Без Меж, you probably should stop reading and go check it out. I love it, maybe not as much as Земла, but that’s not saying too much. Possibly related, I’ve toyed with the idea of getting a tattoo for years, but can’t get over my fear of needles / pain / tattoo artists. (Yes. It’s completely irrational. I don’t care.) I was going to get - if I ever did - one that said все буде добре, but now I’m leaning towards Без Меж. Without limits is a more powerful sentiment to me than everything’s going to be OK.

Anyhoo, I’m looking forward to this year’s festival. To be surrounded by the language and the culture… to sample food I haven’t tasted in years… to shopping for books. My collection of Ukrainian books is growing by leaps and bounds (The Harry Potter series, the Hunger Games trilogy, fairy tales, two other books by JK Rowling, and a bunch of children’s books) but I’m always looking for something more. I collect books like most women collect shoes. Or boyfriends.

And… speaking of boyfriends - well, the imaginary type - I’ve broken up with my long time love, Michael Stipe, in order to devote myself to OE’s lead singer Slava Vakarchuk.

We’re making plans to go to NYC before my birthday and catch them on their only North American tour date (so far). Ugh, March 2017 is too far away! I wish they were on tour in Lviv when we were there, but they’re going to be there in June. *sigh*

That’s OK, though… I may end up spending a lot of time at The Lviv Coffee Manufacturer. It’s known for being Slava’s favourite place in the city, and right now, they don’t have any tour dates booked whilst we’re in Lviv. Thankfully, my love of coffee is an excellent cover story.

That makes me sound like a crazy stalker, doesn’t it? I dunno. I’ve met several celebrities I’ve looked up to and they’re just people. They may be people doing things that have affected me in some way or another, but it’s not just my deal to care so much about them that I know every last detail about them. If I run into him, cool, but I don’t need to bother him for a selfie; the man just wants a cup of coffee, you know?  But he wouldn’t be so bad to look at… I mean, look at him. He’s adorable!

I’ll be putting together a mini-blog here - with things about our Lviv trip. Basically it will be a catch-all for things I want to see and do and then a diary of our trip once we get there. I’m planning the layout / programming now, so maybe I’ll get it up by the 4th of July. At least that’s the plan…

OK. I guess that’s enough stalling… it’s time to work on adding more vocabulary flashcards. And translating my Harry Potter fan fic. And maybe working on the Hunger Games some more. I’m doing well with the book, even though I’m not recognising enough words to truly understand what’s going on. I’ve read the English version several times and have seen the movies about a billion, so I can piece the story together. It’s slow. It’s painful. It’s fun. It’s rewarding.

And that’s really all I want right now: fun, measurable, progress.

Filed under: Culture, Language, My Experiences, Practice, Travel, Soyuzivka, Ukraine

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