Monday, 16 April 2012

Culture.

Wi-fi in our hostel doesn't bloody work! It is so frustrating, that explains our lack of blogage of late, apologies.


Yesterday was a great day in St. Petersburg, it was sunny and we hung out with friends that we had made at the train station in St. Petes. Their names are Nacho and Anita and they are from Archentina! As yesterday was Easter in Russia, we went to the Alexander Nevsky Monastery for a wee look around, it is where Tchaikovsky and Dostoevsky are buried - so much culture! It was really beautiful, less brashy than the cathedrals in Ukraine. It is quite interesting to see so many people of different shapes and sizes all flockin to church to pray. Despite (or perhaps because of) years of communism, Russia is a very religious country. It was quite beautiful to see so many gorgeous girls covering their heads, in gorgeous scarves, before they went to pray. It was quite a site. We saw some real monks hanging out which was quite cool also. 


So Russian!






We then went for a wee walk before taking our very first St. Petes subway ride, thank goodness we had Nacho with us who acted as our guide, intrepid exploring is quite hard and sometimes even the most experienced explorers need a little help sometimes. The St. Petes subway is like a million feet below sea level (or something) and is really gorgeous, chandeliers hang from the ceiling, it makes the Glasgow subway look quite hideous! 





Mr Guide (Nacho) then directed us to the St. Nicholas Cathedral, one of the oldest church's in St. Petes. It is amazing to see so much wealth in this country where so many of its inhabitants live in poverty. That seems to be the general story of Russia, it is sad. Despite this, these buildings are so impressive that it is hard not to be blown away. We had lots of fun walking to the Cathedral and then jumping outside of it, for the first time we felt like real tourists!









The Pièce de résistance of the day was going to the world famous Mariinsky Theatre last night to see Tchaikovsky's Mazepa opera. It was mind blowing. The voices, the story, the theatre, everything made it a perfect experience! We went with our friends Nicola (Frenchy) and Anna (Ruski) and it was amazing. The story was (naturally) very tragic and dramatic but it was amazing. At one point real horses were rode onto the stage which earned a special round of applause from the audience. We had the most amazing seats in the dress circle and the whole thing was so luxurious and incredible. 



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