Introduction
Day 1 - San Francisco to Prague
Day 2 - Kyiv from the air
Day 2 - Boryspil International Airport
Day 2 - First Views Of Kyiv
Day 3 - Guided Tour of Kyiv
Day 3 - Kyiv - On our own
Day 3 - Night train from Kyiv to L'viv
Day 4 - L'viv with Father Ken
Day 5 - Radekhiv
Day 5 - Vytkiv
Day 6 - Trip to Kolomyia
Day 6 - Halych
Day 6 - Ivano-Frankivs'k
Day 7 - Bazaar at Kosiv
Day 7 - Between Kosiv and Kolomyia
Day 7 - Kolomyia
Day 8 - Zvenyhorod
Day 8 - Back in L'viv
Day 9 - L'viv with Orest and Vitali
Day 10 - L'viv - Morning walk with Dad
Day 10 - L'viv on my own
Day 11 - L'viv with Dad
Day 11 - Night train to Budapest
Day 12 - Budapest
Day 13 - Budapest
Day 13 - Szentendre
Day 14 - Homeward bound

TRIP TO UKRAINE
September 19 - October 2, 1999

DAY 14 - HOMEWARD BOUND


Map of World, with plane route marked in black

Saturday, October 2, 1999

Hungarian Air flew us back to Prague to catch our Czech Air plane to Newark. We took a bus from the terminal to the plane, then climbed these stairs.

My old friend in Prague was still hiding.

FINAL THOUGHTS

I was glad to be heading home, but glad I went. I never felt at home in Ukraine, and after that initial reaction when we landed in Kyiv, I never felt a connection with the people or places. I was raised and educated as a Westerner, so while much of what I saw in Ukraine felt familiar, reminding me of visits to Dad's family in Saskatchewan, it still seemed very foreign.

What I enjoyed most was sharing this trip with my father, who obviously feels at home there, speaking the language he learned as a boy, and seeing places he heard his parents and neighbors talk about when he was growing up. I was moved by seeing him stand where his father had been born, and knowing that for him this all had meaning and significance.

And I came away with a renewed appreciation for my good fortune, living in the USA, with the peace and prosperity and opportunities to live as we do.

An update on the economy
A friend who has visited Ukraine recently, and has talked to other recent travelers there, sent me the following assessment:

In the country, the villages are unchanged and poor. In the Cities like Kiev and Lviv all of the foreign designer stores are selling at high prices to the tourists and locals. People are building homes and condominiums and the economy is booming, comparative to 10 years ago. I have many friends living in Kiev and Lviv and they are so impressed!

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Created -- 03/22/2007 Revised -- 03/22/2007