Monday, January 30, 2006

The Three Little Ukrainian Pigs

The Three Little Ukrainian Pigs

There once were three little pigs that lived not far from Poltava. They had happy lives and had wonderful adventures. The state farm they lived on granted them three separate plots of lands to build dachas on. The first pig, Taras, built his dacha with straw. It was a fine dacha with a nice garden in the back. Of course it did not have running water but no other dacha did so it was OK. The second pig, Volva, having access to the state farm’s lumber supply, built his dacha with wood. It was a fine dacha with two stories. The third pig, Petro, built his dacha out of bricks. Petro has a party member and so had access to bricks. Again, it was a fine dacha with a nice wall around it. The wall was to hide the things that Petro had from his fellow dachniks (dachniks are people who live in dachas). They lived nice lives and always felt happy.

One day a wolf appeared. He was a typical wolf, a capitalist, and of course, living in Ukraine, he loved salo. The wolf came upon Taras’s dacha made of straw and thought, “Here is some good eating." The wolf knocked on the door and called out “Please Pon Pig, could you open the door and provide me with some varenikey." Taras, being a smart pig, said “Ne Ne." Actually he said, “Het, Het," Taras spoke Russian. The wolf thought, “This might be harder than I thought." The wolf next decided to blow the dacha down with his strong capitalist breath. So he huffed and he puffed and he blew the dacha downed. Taras the pig had ran out the back and escaped the terrible wolf. This annoyed the wolf but he saw the opportunity for greater gain and so he chased after Taras.

Taras came to Volva’s dacha. Volva was busy making samahaon. Taras told Volva all about the terrible wolf and they both locked all of the doors and windows. When the wolf came upon the wooden dacha he thought, “This is very good, I can see progress." The wolf once again called out, “Greetings Pon Pigs, please could you kindly give me some borscht." The two pigs, being smart pigs and Young Pioneers, were well prepared for this and replied “No one is here." The wolf then called out “I will huff and I will puff and I will blow your dacha down," and of course he did. The two pigs ran off one more time, leaving the wolf behind. This really annoyed the wolf and so he chased them once again.

Taras and Volva ran to Petro’s dacha. They knew it was a well-built dacha, having been built with East German building supplies. Petro was busy studying the writings of Lenin. He knew that communist times were in the past, but he hoped that perhaps they might return and he wanted to stay prepared. The two pigs quickly informed Petro about the terrible wolf and they all worked together to defend the dacha. The wolf appeared and this time he was mad. He called out “Come out Pon Piggies or I will huff and I will puff and I will blow your dacha down” and he did so. Actually, he blew the door down, it was a Russian lock, and went inside to find the three pigs and he ate them.

This being Ukraine and the love of salo is strong.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Onion Domes and Cellphones in Uzhgorod - New York Times

Uzhgorod is on the tourism map.
Onion Domes and Cellphones in Uzhgorod - New York Times

On haircuts

I have been going to the same barbershop for over ten years. It is on Plosha Slavy. I first started going to it because we lived very close by. The most I have ever paid for a haircut is 20 UAH, including tip. I continue to use it because I am very use to it. It offers, for me, an acceptable bargain in hair-care. I am limited in my ability to communicate my hair-care wishes to the barber but I have never been disappointed in the result. Would I recommend it to someone looking for a barber, possibly but not to someone looking for style or the latest thing. One last note, I paid 20 US cents for my first Ukrainian haircut in 1992.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Marks and Spencer to open store in Ukraine

From the Financial Times, Jan. 24, 2006.  by Sophy Buckley.  Found on Action Ukraine Report, #647
LONDON -Marks and Spencer, the high street retailer, will shortly have
more than 200 international franchise stores, five years after it said it was
withdrawing from its lossmaking European operations.

This year it expects to open its first store in Ukraine and at least one
more in Moscow, where it already has two with FYBA Group, its
franchise partner.

M&S is also looking to open up shops in Switzerland and expects to
announce its franchise partner there before the spring.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Russian gas cuts - why there is no need to worry

European Tribune - Community, Politics & Progress.

by Jerome a Paris

This is a very detailed analysis of the Russian/Ukrainian gas problem. It contains information that general news services are missing.