Tuesday June 17th. Second day in Kyiv. The trip went well although we had no less than 6 large suitcases, a light kit, a tripod, two video cameras, one digital SLR (photo camera), two laptops, two carry-ons and two kids aged six and four. Although the flight was long, it went relatively well. We had one minor incident which ended up being quite funny.
IAD, Dulles International Airport in Washington DC, we were getting ready to board the plane, when the attendants decide that our carry-ons and camera bags were too large to fit in the overhead compartments. I was starting to complain that the planes were shrinking and that those were the same bags both of us had carried with no problems in the past, when the nice people at NorthWestern Airlines stopped and looked at the doll that Olia’s daughter Tusia was carrying.
-Well, that’s a doll (really!).
–I’m sorry Mam but that’s a personal item, it counts as a bag.
That was it! We were standing there trying to explain that cameras and computers were too fragile to check in with the rest of the luggage and all they found to complain about was the doll! Poor little bald doll…
Tusia ended up saving us by being her usual over dramatic self. She looks at her mum and says loudly (in English please because she could very well have said it in Ukrainian!)
-Mum, I’m scared! Are they gonna throw away our bag?
–No, Tusi they’re not.
–Mum, I’m scared! Are they gonna throw away my doll?
How can you resist that?
They ended up checking in one of our carry on bags at no charge, Tusia was able to take her doll and we were able to keep the cameras on the plane!
So now, we’re in Kyiv, staying for a few days with Olia’s friends, mostly making phone calls, organizing our schedule for the next six weeks and trying to figure out how to access the archives. I didn’t get to see much of the city yet, but I will post some pictures as soon as we finish plan A, the phone calls.