Sunday, September 13, 2009

Greetings from Yaroslavl, Russia!

Some interesting facts I've learned about Russka. The birth rate is 11.6 per 1000, the death rate 16.5 per 1000. Women live to, on average, be 73 while the men? Just 59 is the average age.
I guess too much vodka and cigs. Another thing that has fascinated me is that the majority of what they take us to see are monastaries, churches and convents.
Most of which are under renovation. During communism, as you know, religion was banned. But apparently the "workers' of the country never abandoned it. Yesterday, we had to wait 3 hours for fog to lift before we could continue down the river.
What did we miss? Another monastary. Today, the countryside is dotted with numerous onion domes of churches. As far as the ship, we are disappointed. The ship is older and needs renovation. The food is not very good and the choices are limited. Yesterday we had a true Russian tea which basically is tead made in a samovar and lots of pastries with Russian fold music. We have asked other passengers if this is the standard for Viking and they say it is not. The other ships have TV's in the rooms, workout rooms etc. Let me just say that I am the youngest person on board. Drank all of our vodka and have got to find another store to get more. Hope all is well and the weather beautiful. The weather here is gorgeous!

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