David and I left the girls at home for a relaxing laundry day while we headed out to see the Ukraine WWII museum.
Until I traveled here I had no idea the population here had such a collective sweet tooth. Everywhere you turn here there is a kiosk selling something that looks and smells good. Our trek started with breakfast at a nearby waffle stand. Good stuff.
Dave is an experienced street food veteran with stomach turning experiences courtesy of the US Army. Dave has dined from many a fine street vendor in Korea, Europe, Iraq, and now Ukraine Dave gives Kiev high marks in quality and quantity of street food.
We traveled by Metro one stop away and took our first Ukraine bus ride toward the museum. Upon arrival we were greeted by a brief downpour. We holed up under an awning for a bit before the rain slacked off and we headed towards our destination.
The pictures here do not do this museum proper justice. Given that it was raining and a weekday there were hardly any other visitors. We were both humbled by the size, presentation, and number of exhibits. The statue above towers over 100' and sits above the museum which occupies three different levels below.
The theme of the museum is primarily the affect of WWII on Ukraine and its people but there is some attention to the USSR as a whole. Labor is cheap here so every exhibit room had an attendant keeping an eye on things as many artifacts were out in displays without glass or ropes in the way.
Lots of 12' tall sculptures
Downed Soviet airplane. Notice not roped off. We were able to get up very close to many exhibits.
Captured German machine guns.
Helmets with bullet and shrapnel holes.
Captured German flame thrower.
Letters in German recovered from killed or captured soldiers. Some letters had the salutation "Liebe Vatti" (Dear Daddy).
Pictures of loved ones lost in Ukraine. This room was a memorial with a banquet table meant to symbolize.a traditional Ukrainian post funeral dinner.
Memorial to fallen soldiers from both sides. A cross made from destroyed rifle parts with German and Soviet helmets at the base.
Overall a very sobering and powerful experience.
Me with a Cold war era T-10 heavy tank.
Tomorrow we go to court and will petition the state to become Olivia's parents. We are excited about the process and hope the judge and jurors agree Olivia belongs with our family. Stay tuned for an update tomorrow morning.
(Beth here... I approved of everything but the laundry comment!)
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