Sunday, October 9, 2011

Past Experience Comes in Handy

Twice a year the Ukrainian Church leaders have asked that we conduct two service projects a year. This is about one Branch in Chernivtsi, which we attend on weekends (yes, that means 32 hours a week on a train to attend church).We helped the Chernivtsi Branch with their Helping Hands Service Project on 1 October. They chose to clean up a park, install some park benches, and repair and paint some playgound equipment. It was a great project that kept 21 people very busy for nearly 5 hours to complete.
In order to install the benches, we had to dig holes (very similar to post holes), place the bench in the holes, mix up a batch of cement and fill the holes so the benchers would not wonder off and remain upright! So this phot is to prove that I still know how to dig post holes in hard ground.

There is an old Soviet Mig in the park, so we called it Mig Park since no one else had a better name for it.

We will try to do a littel better on keeping our blog updated.

Tom and Shauna

Carpathian Mountians in Ukraine

Greetings from the Western part of Ukraine.

We just returned from several days in the west region of Ukraine, well know as the Carpathian Mountains. We had heard of the Carpathians since we arrived in Ukraine, as everyone talked about THE PLACE to go on vacation for rest, relaxation, beautiful scenery and fresh, clean air. They were right in all cases. The area once belonged to Poland, Hungary, Austria, etc. over the centuries. Thus it has a very distinct European flavor in the cities and landscape.

The highest mountain is about 6200 feet in elevation.

The mountain streams were clear with lots of evergreen trees. We were there the first week in October, with the leaves just starting to turn into fall colors. The mountain roads and small farms reminded us of Austria. Our trusted driver, Vlad, drove all the way to Lviv to pick us up and guide us on our trip. We did spend a few days working with various Branches so it was not all vacation!

One highlight of the trip was the Egg Painting Museum in Kolomyia (which is actually close to Chernivtsi on the east side of the Carpatians). There we saw how the artists painted the eggs that are so prevalent in Ukraine.

Tom and Shauna