Sunday, October 14, 2007

My Gastronom

Nine/ten years ago, I spent a depressing year in depressing country. I rarely correspond with the people I knew there (apart from some cool friends in D.C.) and I never even got very far with the language, so I don't really think about it much at all.

But every once in a while I'll see something that will remind me of it, and I'll think to myself, "Dude. I used to live in the fucking Ukraine."

Today my memory was jogged by this photo from Kiev (explanatory caption below).


Police officers in riot gear detain activists of Natalia Vitrenko's Progressive Socialist Party who tried to break a cordon of a rally to mark the 65th anniversary of the anti-Soviet Ukrainian Insurgent Army in downtown Kiev on Sunday, Oct. 14, 2007. The anniversary and calls to recognize the anti-Soviet partisans as World War II veterans has divided Ukraine, with the more nationalistic west supporting recognition, and the Russian-speaking east opposing it. Hostility runs deep because in the war's early years, the anti-Soviet partisans aligned themselves with the Nazis, seeing the invasion as a way to get rid of the Soviet regime. (October 14, 2007 -- Associated Press)

And I remembered that the grocery store in the background was my grocery store, the Centralny Gastronom on Kreshchatik. Here's a photo I took of it nine years ago, in more peaceful days.