Thursday, October 02, 2008

Greetings from Yalta

Hello from Yalta, Crimea - the crown jewel of Ukraine. Today is my second day here and what a place this is. Easy to see what it's the ultimate vacation destination for the former USSR.

Today I went to the Swallow's Nest. So how was it that an eagle landed on my shoulder?

I'm here actually for a physics conference. We're discussing nuclear energy. You may not have known that I'm into physics and stuff like that. More about in a minute. . .

This afternoon we toured Livadia Palace, site of the Yalta Conference of 1945. And guess who showed up for that meeting?

Back to the physics conference. . .

Well here's the group. All these smart people have PhDs in physics. So why am I there? Actually I'm behind the camera but in the group is Michael Sadler, former colleague at ACU and a big-wig in the world of physics. He's also a missions committee member at University Church of Christ, Abilene, who has done much for the Rostov congregation over the years. So we have several connections. Michael is in Yalta for this conference and . . . what a good time for me to swing south 2 hours by bus to see Yalta and say Howdy. I've been enjoying visiting with these fune folks at meals and such. And catching up on Mike and his family. And while they're having their physics research sharing sessions, I'm busy doing the tourist thing.

Tomorrow we head back north to Simferopol, which is where I'm staying. But Michael has a train to catch to Rostov and Emil, another colleague originally from Croatia, now working in Virginia is with our group and we'll get him on the overnight train to Kiev tomorrow afternoon.

Meeting such interesting folks here at this conference: from Russia, Ukraine, Germany, Italy. Beside Michael is another American, a physics professor at Kent State University. Neat - I was born and raised in NE Ohio and took some graduate classes at KSU once upon a time.

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