Monday, June 23, 2008

We've made it to Kyiv!

Greetings from Kyiv! Praise God we made it safe and sound!

Here is a picture of Ukraine as we are descending to land.

Interesting how you can buy a beer from a vending machine. I wonder how they check the age?

When we got off the plane (about an hour later than expected due to late departure in JFK because they said they wanted to accommodate a group of missionaries) we first needed to head through “pass port control”.

They needed to know where we were staying and we had simply entered “Kyiv” on the paperwork. He, with thick Russian accent said, “Kyiv is a very big city and we need the address”. I said it is some hotel and that I don’t know its address. But, remembering the advice received recently from FRUA, we said it was the “Hotel DNIPRO” and he said very well then write that down, and we did, and we then went to the next step.

Baggage Claim.

This was pretty hilarious. Lots of saran wrap. And are these checked melons? Round and round went the same bags that no one touched unless they were putting them BACK on the track after falling off at every corner!

But after about a half hour, ours sure enough came ‘round and we then went to the next step.
This is the green line of customs declaration where we just simply had to go through a security X-ray screening of our bags again (to leave the airport)?!

Kyiv is beautiful!

This picture was taken from the car window during our drive.

Here is our apartment right on the Dniper River.

Unlike the keys in Ivanovo, Russia which were big and ancient looking, our apartment key looks just like one of our American house keys. You just have to lock the door if you want it to stay

Our luxurious bathroom!

John and I are pleased to see all kinds of family activity here. This is a playground right on the banks of the river. Most families here have only one or two children with three being unusual, and I think we would stick out like a sore thumb if we would have brought all of our kids.
BTW, hi kids!

Funny how this river freezes three feet thick in winter but is 80 degrees right now!

This is a beautiful church being refurbished with ornate gold tops. To us, this was a wonderful sight to see but at the same time I can't help but wonder if the magnificent church actually deters people from coming because one can feel unworthy even walking into it. I think that if the church resembled more of an outdoor revival camp, it might attract more people.

These hardworking men were drilling for water on the church grounds.

Here are those gold tops I was telling you about.

We went to a fancy coffee/sushi shop and had very expensive coffee (worst $8 bucks I've ever spent if you don't count the experience). The check came in this. Very unusual.

We tried a restaurant that supposedly has WiFi and ordered this dessert to eat while we waited. It was filled with pears, pine nuts and apples. It was yummy but again, too expensive for my blood. We are having cup of noodles from home tonight for dinner. Sadly, they had no Internet connection either.

This is our apartment building. We are on the first floor.

We took this gorgeous (not) picture of us in front of the Dniper River. Doesn't it look picturesque?

Not from this picture.

We've walked along this strip many times today just people watching and looking at all the buildings.

This was fancy restaurant next to EKO which is the grocery store. John had to wait outside because we didn't want to put all of our computer stuff in a locker.

Here is another restaurant front. Very, very pretty.

These boys parked their bikes so that they could chase stray cats.

BTW, Tomorrow afternoon is our SDA appointment.


kitzkazventure said...

Safe and sound! yeah! Your bathroom looks just like one we had in Kazakhstan....I mean exactly same shower, toilet, and sink. Weird....maybe it comes in a big kit at the Eastern Europe Home Deport. That shower is fun for tall hubbie is 6'3! And, it was not so fun with my full-figured self and an over-stimulated 3 year old.....makes me laugh now, not so much then! :)
It is nice to see all of the pictures of your hubbie and you. Enjoy this honeymoon?
Smiles! karen

Amy W said...

Yea, you made it!! I LOVE the pictures, keep having fun!!

DoveFamily said...

Beautiful pics! Everything looks so different in the summer :) I'll be praying before bed tonight, and again as I get up in the wee hours tomorrow morning.


Charissa said...

I just got teary-eyed at the thought of Denis meeting his family soon. Why do I love him so much?

It's weird to see Kiev in the summer. 80 degrees? Wow. Be glad you didn't have to pack winter coats, hats and boots. :)

The Balsis Family said...

I'm so happy you are there and getting settled! Can't wait for the SDA update!

Salzwedel Family said...

Hooray - you're there!

Kristen said...

Congratulations on arriving safely, with all your bags! Enjoy your time, get rest, eat those noodles like it's from a luxury restaurant, and have a great SDA appt. tomorrow.

Deanna said...

Glad to hear you made it safe and sound...

Best of luck with your appointmennt tomorrow!!!

Troy and Rachel said...

Great photos!! I can't get over all the luggage!! It looks like you are enjoying the sights and soaking up the city! We'll be thinking about you tomorrow with your appointment.

Connie said...

So glad to see you made it there well :-) Good to see you're in a place where you can get out and roam around too. Take care, and I hope everything goes well. Love you!

adopting2fromUkraine said...

Love the pictures! Glad you made it there safely! It was amazing to us how easily it was to buy any kind of alcohol. We saw a very young looking boy drinking beer in pizza place.

I saw some 'saran wrap' stations in JFK. I think it is a big Ukrainian thing. I thought the same thing, what good does it do to ex-ray your bags are you're leaving the airport.

We have pictures of the Dnipro river frozen. It was amazing. You could see the ripples in the ice, just like the river was moving as it froze!

We found lots of ramen noodles in the grocery stores, though we never went to one in the area where you are.

Best wishes tomorrow,

joeks said...

Thanks for the great update!
Prayers go with you for your appointment tomorrow.

Rachel said...

Praying for all to go smoothly! Thanks for the update!

max said...

Great to hear you arrived safely.Cannot wait for tomorrows blog :)

rachel said...

hi mom how is your day? we are doing good . how is ukraine. have you met couple people. we love you mom and dad happy birthday.

Carey and Norman said...

Yeah!! You are finally there. Kiev looks beautiful. I loved all the photos and thought the one of you together was great. We always forget to take candid shots.

I am so looking forward to hearing about your visit with Dennis.

Cheryl M said...

Oh good you got there safely! I've been thinking of you and knew you would update your blog almost immediately! I've been following this journey with you as well.

Blessings and I hope you SDA appt will run smoothly. Is it like a Russian adoption or completely different?

Many prayers sent to you and your family back at home!

KristenK said...

Woohoo! You made it. Looks like you're having a good time. Hope your appointment goes well tomorrow.

Tapsalteerie said...

Love all the pics and the dialog!!

Hope all goes well for you!!

Major Mom said...

Looks great!!! Can't wait to see pics of the new baby!

Serge said...

Christine, John, very happy to read that you are safe and sound in Ukraine! Would love to go one day. I hear that Odessa has fabulous beaches! ;) Love the pictures and cannot wait to see some more! ;-) God's speed and take care!

Debbie said...

It's great to see the pictures of Kyiv, and I am so excited for your appointment!

Mom Elaine said...

Dear John and Chris, So glad to hear you made it safely. Kiev is absolutely beautiful. I'll be reading your blogs everyday.
Love, Mom

schoolmother said...

I am so excited that you have arrived safely in Kyiv. It was SO cold by the water when we were there in Feb. Looking forward to your next post.

kelly said...

Im glad to hear you all made it safe and sound,I will be praying for all to go well tomorrow

MamaPoRuski said...

Wow, your bathroom really is a luxuary! Do you know what part of town you are in? Will be praying for the SDA appointment. If you brought spiky heels (LOL!)they will get stuck in the old cobblestones on the street in that part of town, but the women will appreciate your sense of fashion! Sleep well!

Martha said...

Wow! Glad to see you are well and safe. Will be praying for all your meetings.

Jill said...

Great photos - I appreciate seeing them as we hope to be there in a few months & it's nice to get a visual idea of what it will be like. Good luck at your meeting tomorrow!!! :o)

Amy said...

Great photos Christine!
You have been VERY busy your first few hours!
I can't wait to hear how your appointment goes tomorrow!

Best wishes and rest up!


Annalyn said...

Hi Mom and Dad. I really miss you. I hope you are having a good time. I can't wait to see you and Dennis. Everybody else misses you also. I love you, Annalyn

Sveta said...

Dear Mom and Dad

I hope your having a good time. I miss you and love you, Sveta

William said...

Dear Mom and Dad

I hope you have a great time in Ukraine with Dennis. I can't wait to see you and Dennis. I love you guys very much, William

Andrew said...

Dear Mom and Dad

We are having a good time with Mrs. Cappelletty and Mr. Cappelletty. We love and miss you mom and dad, Andrew and Jonathan

WheresMyAngels said...

Praying all goes well tomorrow!

Love the pictures!

Chelley said...

Been thinking about your two lots!! I just did a time check and right now its

The current time in Ukraine is
6:57 AM Tuesday, 24 June

Appointment DAY!

Prayers that it will all go to gods plan!!! I will be

HANGING around waiting to hear!!!

prayers to you guys!!!

sis Elena said...

Hey sis! Hey bro! So glad you made it safely! I'm getting super anxious to meet my new nephew =) and can't wait for you all to come home. I love you guys and can't wait to read more. Take lotsa pics, LOTSA PICS!

Cairo Mama said...

Great pictures! So great that you are getting out to explore. What an adventure!

Chelley said...

Still praying for you guys!!

Brandi said...

Whohoo!!!! Yeah!

I can't wait to read more. . document EVERYTHING!


Are You Serious! said...

♡ Great pictures! Glad you guys made it! :)

Annie said...

I wonder if you'll have time to read all these comments! But comment, I must! THANKS! I love the details. Must say that the glorious Orthodox churches certainly draw me in! I shiver with the beauty of God, and am so aware of His majesty. I need that. Usually I'm just asking for His help with parking or something.

Tami said...

I love the pictures of Kiev. It makes me miss it a bit. (I can't believe I said that! :) I'm so glad you enjoyed your time in that great city. Now I'm off to read about your SDA appointment! :)