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vagabonds3 "Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry and narrow mindedness." Mark Twain

Vladivostok and Korsakov

RUSSIAN FEDERATION | Saturday, 10 August 2019 | Views [24]

Russian navy in port, Vladivostok

Russian navy in port, Vladivostok

FRANCISCO, THE TYPHOON THAT HAS BEEN CHASING us all week through the Sea of Japan, seems to be gaining on us.  As if that’s not enough North Korea, just 200 miles away, recently launched a missile into the Sea and I have to wonder what the fishing boats off to port are really fishing for.  The captain has stepped on the gas to keep ahead of the storm and we arrived in Vladivostok before midnight, six hours ahead of schedule.

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  Vladimir Lenin                                 Yul Brenner

In the misty dawn we got our first view of the harbor.  Five Russian navy ships with full compliments of missiles just added to the mystique of Vladivostok.  Much like wartime Lisbon and Casablanca (and Istanbul anytime) Vladivostok seemed a destination for spies and other notorious types, rushing to or escaping from danger at the eastern end of the Trans-Siberian Railroad.  

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                   Photos from the Arseniev Museum

The reality is a dreary city with cold, cloudy winters with snow measured in meters.    Its communist-era shabbiness is still apparent and a statue of Lenin overlooks the train station.  Another statue honors Vladivostok’s favorite son, Yul Brenner.  The only glow in the musty, dusty Arseniev Museum was “Red Manchester,” featuring Soviet-era embroidery and tapestries.  

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    Tapestries from "Red Manchester" Exhibit

It wasn’t much of a shore excursion, but as it turns out, our last time ashore in Mother Russia.  With the approaching storm, the captain was dubious about our chances to get ashore in Korsakov.  We weren’t crazy about a 1½ mile tender trip so we cancelled in time for a refund.  As it turns out, the seas weren’t all that bad but we heard the excursion, which was delayed by several hours due to Russian bureaucracy, wasn’t very good either. 

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        Dasvidaniya, Y'all!

 

 

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John and Connie, Sheikh Zayad Grand Mosque, Abu Dhabi

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