Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Summer in Berdyansk

To most Australian residents Berdyansk is just a foreign word, but for me it is a special place - it is my wife’s birthplace.

Berdyansk is a small town located on the northern coast of the Sea of Azov in Ukraine. It is known due to its sea port and industries. It is also home to a health resorts with mud baths and climatic treatments.

I was fortunate enough to travel to Berdyansk to visit what has securely become one of Ukraine’s best summer destinations and meet my new babushka (grandma) for the first time.

At first sight the town of Berdyansk isn’t much to be desired. All of the apartment blocks were built in the 1950’s Soviet Union time and were given to people for free. After the collapse of the U.S.S.R nothing has been touched. What the place lacks in architectural advancements it makes up for in charm and character of the people of Berdyansk. And it was the people of Berdyansk that I fell in love with. They might not have much, but they enjoy life and are happy and are so welcoming and proud of their town.

Summer days are spent in Berdyansk going to the beach, eating dried fish, drinking beer and playing cards. It’s a simple life and pretty easy to get used to by forgetting to turn on my mobile phone, check emails or correspond with the outside world and get lost in a timeless place of the true Ukraine.

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