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Odesa II

Building corner of the Odesa Art Gallery for Western and Eastern Art.

So I got to the bottom of the Odessa with two S’s and Odesa with one S. Transpires that the spelling with two S’s is the Russian version and the other with the single S is the official Ukrainian spelling of the city’s name. Since 2014 if you spell the city’s name in any public forum with two S’s it’s tantamount to declaring you’re a Kremlin sympathiser.

Potemkin Steps as seen from the -not often used these days- international cruise ship arrival hall.

Odesa town hall

The cold and grey day didn’t prevent these men doing battle over the card, chess and dominoes tables in the local park. Just as it probably hasn’t for the last forever years.

Aleksander Sergeyevich Pushkin

Russian poet, playwright, and novelist who is considered by many to be the greatest Russian poet and also founder of modern Russian literature. Lived in various states of the Russian empire at the time including Chişinău (and boy don’t they make a song and dance about it) before moving to Odesa for a year in 1823. Like the Moldovans the Ukrainians haven’t missed a beat in celebrating his residency in Odesa. There’s a small museum dedicated to his time here as well as a street named after him.

Observations

:not as many cigarette smokers as Bulgaria and Romania

:lots of very hard looking unsmiling men about town with near cropped haircuts and that look in their face that tells you they aren’t going to thank you if you hold the door open for them. Which is no problem by me at alllllll. Honestly sir. Have my wallet as well. Here take my jacket too. I never liked it anyway.

:not a male server to be seen in the Odesa Post Office

:hard to find someone selling Odesa postcards

:there appears to be little to no civil construction going on

:there appears to be entire blocks of the city in dire need of some civil construction

:it appeared to be the quietest industrial port of any I have seen anywhere. Not a soul or movement witnessed. Cranes and ships lying idle.

:one of the questions I asked back in Chişinău was when the great weather was going to end. Consider it ended. Since I crossed into Ukraine it’s being overcast and progressively colder. Today’s top supposedly 12 but with the Black Sea wind chill factor I am guessing less than 10. Positively balmy in comparison to Kiev where I head tomorrow. -2 to 8 is the forecast temperature range there.

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