Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Kiev 2

Random assortment of thoughts ...

- While I was cleaning the table in the hospital - "you'll make such a great housewife" some grandma told me with a smile. Like it's my dream to be a housewife I told her. I need to work and after work, I want to go to movies, theatres, rock climbing, dancing, yoga, see my friends. I don't have time to be a housewife. I was born to conquer mountains, not to wipe off dust.

- Ira is comparing Canada to Ukraine. "Probably in Canada it's clean, not like shit hole in here", then she throws a candy wrapper on the ground. All I can think about is the Michael Jackson song "I'm starting with a man in the mirror"

- All the street crossings in the center of Kiev are underground. Keeps the city in shape! as well as all the mothers with kids and old people ... oh wait, I haven't seen them walking in city centers. Kiev is full of 5 story identical buildings called "Hrushevki" from the president "Hrushev" who was in power in the 70s and built a bunch of them all over the country, cheap buildings that helped solve the housing crisis. They were meant to last for 20 years until a better solution would be proposed, but as we all know, nothing has happened 20 years later, and now they all stand crumbling, making the city ugly with unknown future of hundreds of thousands of residents and without elevators. First I was huffing and puffing going up the 4th floor, now it's a piece of cake :)

- Hard to find atm that accepts foreign cards, even if it's on the plus network. I searched an entire city, tried 20 or more banks (Ukraine has 100s of banks!!! I've never seen it in my life!) and I only found 1 bank that would take my card which is some German bank.

- Along with street signs showing street names, there are expensive hotels/restaurants/shops ... probably sponsoring the street signs :)

- Seems like Ukraine lives on coffee. Does it need it to keep yourself going? To give you energy to last through the day, to last through the long office hours? It seems like you can't walk for a minute in any random location without finding either a coffee shop, or a kiosk that sells coffee or a car with an open trunk and an espresso machine stuck in it. Sometimes 3 on one intersection. I met a girl from couch surfing, we only met up for an hour in a coffee place. She said that on Monday, Wednesday and Friday she works from 8:30am to 9:30pm. Tuesday and Thursday she has more time. When she met me at 6 it was her break from work. On the weekend it's a holiday, and she's gonna check if she can take time off of work.

- Went into a church, so weird to look at people crossing themselves 5 times and bowing, do they really think god wants them to do it? At least I warmed up in there. Churches can be useful after all :)

Bus - people get into any open door on the bus and pass the money to the driver through all the people on that bus, and then get a ticket with change, and like that on every stop with every passenger.

Hospital - no order, every day new rules. Have to bring your own food, pills for the patients, bandages, etc. Nobody wants to help. I called a surgeon to help put the feeding tube back in which my grandma took out while she was sitting on a chair, I asked him if he can help me put her on the bed. "It's not my job! For what am I a surgeon?" he said - "for what are you a human?" I asked him. Elevator doesn't work, only for critically ill you have to knock hard on the door and yell the floor number.
Overall I'm in a hospital for 8 hours a day. Feeding, cleaning, massaging, giving pills, entertaining, calling different doctors for help. If I go to the hospital in the evening, I try to go out somewhere to the city center to relax, to forget to somehow reduce my stress. Since I came to Ukraine I don't have any appetite, and in 2 weeks I already lost 5 kgs.
It got much better with Andrew, a son of a woman in the same room as my grandma. We can talk for hours, or rather he can talk. Today he told me about the bible, Lucifer, London rats, Brazil's jungles, different poets, writers, how Hitler sold his soul to the devil, it was like going to university for general knowledge course :)
Andrew told me, as I am sitting in a hospital anyway, might as well do some checkups. I went to the doctor and asked to be checked. She asked me what bothers me most, I guess that I can't breath properly when I hike up the mountains or when I run up the stairs. I did an x-ray, they told me in the lab that I have pneumonia (vospolenie legkih), zdraste! The doctor looked at the film and said that I have chronic bronchitis. I don't really believe in it, cause I'm feeling fine. She told me to do 3D computer scanning. Andrew asked me if I'm nervous, of course I'm not! There aren't any conclusions yet, why be nervous. I did the scanning, everything's fine, the doctor told me to check my heart. There you go. That's the reason I don't go to doctors. Especially when there isn't anything typically wrong. One says one thing, another says another thing. what if I'd listen, I'd go through a bunch of antibiotics trying to heal what exactly? How many patients are getting wrongly treated? I think that a healthy life style, eating good, healthy, organic food, using organic cosmetics and body care, doing sports and living a stress free happy life, that what's good for my health, not x-rays and chemicals that make my organs act the way they shouldn't by nature. How many people are climbing mountains especially above 4000 meters? I guess not that many, most are not even doing regular climbs or hikes. Or even to walk up the 4th floor, everybody's using elevators or are just walking to the store or to the nearest bus station. I'm sure that if all the people went climbing mountains, the hospitals would explode with all kinds of "sick" people.

- Every nurse/doctor I talked to about bed sores said different method of healing them. Sometimes, "it's the best method", other times "it's the worst method". X-ray shows chronic bronchitis; when I wanted to remove a moll in Canada, my doctor said that it can't be removed, a year later he said that of course it can be removed. It's a scary thought to think that doctors have no idea what they're talking about. Especially that pharmaceutical companies pay them to sell certain drugs. In a placebo effect movie that I saw, it says that patients can feel better just by seeing a doctor and "knowing" that they will help, and so they heal based on their faith, and not from drugs.

- Saw the movie "earthlings" about hidden cameras in the animal farms. For sure some people will become vegetarians after watching it (freely available on youtube!). Now I have a lot to think about. I could never order a live fish; I am always disgusted by animal cruelty... but what's happening to the animals that end up in my fridge? If people are unaware of what's going on, it doesn't change the fact that it's happening every day, it doesn't change the fact that you're supporting it!

- In March it was already spring in Ukraine. All the snow melted, and I was waiting for the leaves to come out to hide hideous Soviet buildings. Out of nowhere a huge snow storm hit Kiev, the storm didn't stop for 2 days. All the transport/schools/businesses shut down, and it's in a country that's well used to snow! People were skiing on the streets, cars were buried in the snow till the roof, and overall it was awesome! No people outside, it white, it's quite. They're probably sitting in their apartments, biting their nails and complaining about the weather, while I'm happily jumping from one snow pile to the next :)

- Just as suddenly as the snow storm hit Kiev, Misha's screams hit me. I am sleeping when at 7 in the morning the door is flying open and he's screaming why am I not up yet as I need to be in the hospital. "What? Who? Where?" I'm explaining to him that I'll get there by 10. Grandma is sleeping everyday till 10 anyway, there is no point going there early sitting 2 hours and doing nothing. "Why go at 10, you can get there at 3!!!!" and the door flew closed. It came so suddenly that I had no time to properly react. Who is he to yell at me? Who gave him that right? Then on his computer, I logged into my skype account, I didn't expect what came next. He didn't know that anyone who has skype can login, he doesn't know anything about computers and thought that skype was all his own. He looked at the contact list. "Why is it all in some gibberish? Where are my Italian people, where is Igor where is Lyosha?? he's yelling. I tried to explain to him that it's my account in the most plane language that I could. "Who are all these Asian people??? Bring me back my Italians!!!" I told him that all he needs to do is enter his password. Of course he doesn't know what a password it, let alone what it is. Oh man. No amount of my computer skills could calm him down and tell him that all his info is safe and could be resolved in minutes. I called Ira to reset his password, when she did and was about to tell it to me on the phone, he grabbed the receiver with force and hung up the phone with a loud bang... what a lunatic, I was about to boil over and explode. At least one of us has their nerves in check.
His mouth is bigger than any woman I know. I've only been to Ukraine for a few days, already the whole neighbourhood knows that I sit like an Indian on the chair; that I put my legs up on the couch; that I left a dirty mop in the shower and didn't clean it; that I left unfinished apple on the table; that I arrived in the middle of the winter only in sports pants and a rain jacket, on and on and on! And to think that my grandma told dad how Misha is much better than her late husband.

https://picasaweb.google.com/100036016632387453128/Kiev

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