We take a Sunday stroll and encounter a guard pig
Trip Start Oct 02, 2011
26Trip End Oct 27, 2011
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This morning I again chose the Healthy Start breakfast; coffee and slaw is growing on me. The servers are graduates of the orphanage who are learning restaurant work. They are very sweet. Though their English is limited, they always politely say "enjoy your meal" when they put your food in front of you. The phrase must have been part of their training. And when they bring your coffee they also say “enjoy your meal.” Today I dropped my spoon on the floor. When the server delivered a replacement she said, “enjoy your meal.” I was completely charmed.
So here’s the latest reason for the need for travel flexibility: One of the nice police officers who extorted the bribe last night also took Manfred’s car insurance certificate
In any case, without the ability to document insurance coverage, and with rogue police ranging over the countryside, Manfred reasonably elected to stable his car in the guest house parking lot. So no trips to nearby towns, or even back to Uzhgorod to see the sights. Suddenly we had a whole day on our hands for exploring the 'hood.
After lolling in the guest house for the morning we decided to take a stroll. We walked up the dirt road past modest houses, fields, and stands of oaks. Eventually we encountered a partially-finished Orthodox church with walls the color of Crest toothpaste. Its golden domes glinted in the sunlight. Further on was what looked like a subdivision of exclusive homes under construction.
Some of the partially built structures were overgrown with vines. But most of the sites were active, and protected by not very friendly looking dogs, almost all German Shepherds, who made it clear that it might not be such a great idea to explore the construction activities
At the top of the hill was yet another church, this one in the advanced stages of completion. The photo shows Manfred, who is an architect, contemplating its form and function. While he was doing that I walked down to the entrance to see how the interior was coming along. I cracked open the door to see a cross with a painting of Jesus leaning against the wall, a fancy runner leading to the alter, and a golden chandelier hanging down mid-ceiling.
Emboldened, I opened the door wider and started to step in. Just then a man with shoulder-length hair holding a big bottle of mineral water walked across the platform under the alter and noticed me. Timidly I said “hello.” The man simply stared, not saying a word or even altering his expression one bit. I thought of all those guard dogs at the construction sites and decided to step back. I closed the church door, and rejoined Manfred in external contemplation.
On the way back down the hill we passed yet another construction site. It seemed atypically quiet and peaceful. Then we noticed that it was protected not by a dog, but by a menacing guard pig! See the photos for documentation.