Thursday, December 03, 2009

Easing into the Monochrome of a Russian Winter

As the days shorten, the late afternoon sunshine gives a muted, gray look to the streets here in Rostov-on-Don. Care to join me for a quick look at highlights around the city?

Meet Alexander Pyshkin, (1799 - 1837) beloved poet of Russia. His statue above overlooks his namesake thoroughfare, Pyshkinskaya Boulevard. It's likely that every city across Russia has a street named in his honor. (Click photo to enlarge.)

A block south of Pyshkinskaya, on Voroshilovskii Street we see that the Planet of Languages awaits ~ if per chance you're interested in language study. English is first on the list there, followed by German, Spanish, Italian, French, Turkish and Greek. How about that flag on the tongue! It makes perfect sense to the speaker of Russian. You see, in Russian, one word - язык - means either language or the physical tongue. So it's a visual pun.

Now we're on the main street through town, Bol'shoi Sadoviya Street - that is, Big Garden Street - which runs parallel to the Don River, several block south. Before perestroika, this was called Engels Steet. And during World War 2 when Rostov was occupied, Nazi troops marched along it on their way to work. Nowadays, all that is mostly forgotten as young folks stroll along listening to their iPods.

Zipping east a couple miles on Bol'shoi Sadoviya, we come to Theatre Square. This area is a hub of community activity. You see the fountain, the Tractor Theatre on the left, Stella the obelisk in the distance overlooking the Don steppe. Notice the boys running on the right. They've got plans and we'll catch up with them in a minute.

Tractor Theatre, there on the left, yes it's really named that. Simply because of its shape, a salute to the value of agriculture in the area. Seen from the air, the tractor shape is more discernible. Well, surprise, surprise! I happen to have an aerial shot here handy. Especially for You!

Please click to enlarge. Beyond Stella, the white boxy building is the theatre. The wheel wells are there on the right and left. And the machine is headed this a way!

Back down on earth, let's zoom in on Stella, the golden girl who commemorates the end of Nazi occupation of World War 2. She's taller than the Statue of Liberty, as I recall, and is built overlooking the Don River and wide open steppe beyond that. Stella is visible for miles as a person approaches Rostov from the south.

Remember those boys? Well in the last few minutes they realized the fountain was perfect for climbing. A little muddy but that makes it all the better.

And now for a quick look at posters on display in an underground walkway. On the left: To sell in a civilized, cultural manner ~ (is) honorable work! On the right: Come comrades! Come join us at the collective farm!


Pat said...

Your photo of Pyshkin made me think of our time in Moscow and seeing his statue on Arbat. Thanks for the wonderful photos of Russia. It takes me right back to our time there when we were bringing our boys home. It was only 5 months ago, but it feels like a lifetime!

Eileen said...

Thank you Pat for your note. I might need to follow you to Arbat St in Moscow to see Pyshkin's statue. Don't know that I've ever done that! Congratulations on your BOYS - adopting is so heroic. Need a statue to Adoptive Parents!

John from Kansas said...

Wonderful tour Eileen, thanks for posting.

Eileen said...

Thanks so much, John! Always good to hear from you!

jonny said...

It takes me right back to our time there when we were bringing our boys home. It was only 5 months ago, but it feels like a lifetime.

StorageCraft said...

The photos in your blog are so good that it made remind of my family. It is is States and i am working right now in Ecuador. I miss them a lot.

MessageForce said...

The photos in the blog are great.A person cannot realize the importance of the family unless he has to stay away from it. Ask from me the importance of the family.

Pete said...

Hey dude very nice pictures you have posted. These pictures remind me of my family as I can tell what family means to me...really superb...thanks for the post.

Shawn mitchell said...

I know how it feels when a person has to stay away from his family. Though i had a nuclear family but now when i am away from my parents i feel their importance and value in my life.