Khmelnitskiy... Day One
Trip Start Jul 16, 2008
43Trip End Ongoing
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My departure from Oleksandr's was made up bit difficult by the out of control dog which meant I couldn't really say good-bye to my hosts, which was a bit of a pity as they were so hospitable. In any case, after a short trolley bus ride, I was back at the rather busy railway station, but there turned out to be lots of ticket windows open if you wanted to buy tickets for travel on the same day so getting a ticket was surprisingly easy for Ukraine.
Train travel in Ukraine is great as the trains run very much on time and it has a certain aura to it, with every carriage having a conductor(ess) who makes sure everyone gets off at the right station and also keeps everyone supplied with tea. They also check everyone's tickets at each station and some of them look rather cute... or is it the uniform...?
For the part of my journey to the next stop, Ternopil, I shared the coupé with a woman travelling back home to eastern Ukraine but at Ternopil a family shared our carriage including a very vivacious and cute girl. She came into our carriage alone, sat down and very confidently said 'hello' and then asked our names.
Once in Khmelnitskiy I had to worry about my hotel again, as there are only a handful of hotels in town but I suppose in general you're not going to have that many internal tourists in Ukraine staying at relatively expensive hotels. In any case, I found a room in the second hotel that my taxi driver took me to. Very pleasant front-desk staff and the room is pretty good and a reasonable price - 200 hryvny - about A$40.
Why is this city called Khmelnitskiy? Well, it's named after a famous Ukrainian Kozak leader - Bohdan Khmelnitskiy. He's famous enough that just about every city in Ukraine has a Khmelnitskiy street - and a few also have a Khmelmitskiy statue.