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September 7, 2002

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In Kiev we stay in an apartment. A few days ago we sent an email to a homestay agency which arranged a full apartment for half the cost of a hotel ($40 per night). From our apartment we walk around suburban areas near downtown. We explore Kiev and watch people rather than city sites. Ukrainian fashion involves leather and high heels for women. Black is the only color for the chic. Not many people wear new clothes. The men wear t-shirts, corduroys, and a black leather jacket and black shoes. Women wear tight pants or skirts, a tight shirt with a colorful print (bold ones wear leopard skin print shirts) and of course, black leather jackets. Whatever the fashion, we're not it. Our faded zip-off pants, hiking boots, and frayed t-shirts always draw stares.
The cheap tour; ride a bus for 10 cents around the city.
St Sophia, built in 1017, the first major Slavic church and the beginning of Christianity in Ukraine and Russia.
St Sophia was named after the greatest church of the ancient world, Hagia Sophia of Istanbul. Inside rests the sarcophagi of Yaroslavl, the fourth ruler of Russia.
Local fashion - stiletto heels and black head-to-toe..