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Maidan, three years later

21 November, 2016

We wandered around on our own for a bit and then crashed a Maidan remembrance ceremony. As you do.

Let’s back up a bit.

Last night after meeting Stephania and Maria, we went out for a bite to eat. We found a place that looked kind of cool and had food that we could eat. (I married a guy as picky an eater as myself…) We go there and the kid waiting on us is totally rude to us. Like, I tried to order in Ukrainian and he shot me down hard.

I’ve worked hard on my Ukrainian and I don’t appreciate his rudeness just because he wrote us off as tourists.

It’s a cultural thing here to linger after a meal and then have to ask for your check. Well, we were done eating - not that he stopped to see if we wanted any dessert, coffee, anything - and when I tried to get his attention so that we could get out of there, he was ridiculous. The varenyky were good. Not like Baba used to make, but passable. It’s a shame the guy was such an ass. I would have gone back there.

Today, we found a bookstore that had the Ukrainian version of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, picked up more chocolate to try, had more blowtorch coffee and went for a bus ride around the city. Nothing too exciting. Except, maybe, for the part where I almost died of a heart attack trying to climb up the City Hall tower.

Totally worth it, though. Look at that view.

Then, after we got off the bus tour, we had coffee at this little cafe near the Opera House (Lviv Coffee Manufacture) and started wandering back down towards our hotel. There was a huge amount of people hanging around so we went to check it out. Turned out, it was a ceremony / celebration for the third anniversary of the Maidan:
Ukraine is marking its National Day of Dignity and Freedom, the new holiday established by a presidential decree 2 years ago.

The national holiday, celebrated annually on 21 November, commemorates the 2004 Orange Revolution and the 2013 Euromaidan protests.

It was actually kind of wild to stand in a crowd of Ukrainians, listening to speeches and singers. I watched an older woman cry and I practically lost it when they sang the National Anthem. The entire time, videos of Maidan were airing in the background, and I kept thinking about Maria and Stefania and what they had to live through to get to this point in history…

This trip has far exceeded my expectations and then some.

Filed under: Culture, Holidays, Travel, Ukraine

What you had to say...
Maxim 23 November, 2016

Hi, I just came across your page on Lang-8, hope you don’t mind my commenting all of a sudden. It’s a shame to hear you guys had a bad experience with Ukrainian restaurant service. Things are getting better fast lately, but obviously there’s still a long way to go. I love Lviv though, it’s one of the prettiest places you could visit in Ukraine. So good choice! Let me know if you’re around central Ukraine, I could show you Dnipro (former Dnipropetrovsk city, although it may seem like there’s not much to look at it’s a sweet town).

Cheers!

Max

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