Posts Tagged ‘St. Petersburg’

Although I’m already back in Helsinki I still wanna give u an overview of the last days in Russia. On Saturday we woke up early-ish to do some more sightseeing. It was very cold outside but we walked the entire time.

First stop was the “eternal flame” at the “Field of Mars”. We already passed the flame with the bus on day 1 but as it was kinda far away we felt like going there and check it out properly. We spent some time there warming up our hands(and asses lol).

warming up

And then we proceeded to the Peter and Paul Fortress. It was far away but we got to see a lot of St.Petersburg. We checked out the cathedral which was very pretty(and very gold).

cathedral

I don’t know why but there where 2 TV teams with cameras that filmed and interviewed people. Unfortunately they must have missed our awesomeness as they did not interview us 😉

By the time we were done we could not feel our toes anymore. It felt horrible but we were strong and walked back all the way and had some hot chocolate and tea and relaxed at the bakery next to our hotel.

At 3.30pm most of us left for “Catherine’s Palace” which is in Pushkin. It was the summer residence of the Russian tsars in the 18th century.

Catherine’s Palace in Pushkin

It was so beautiful! I could definitely live there! The rooms were amazing and I even liked(most) of the paintings. The guide we had was the same we’ve had in the Hermitage. But I think this time she did not hate me that much. Maybe because I was very quiet(i felt horrible and sick that day). Before we could all enter the holy rooms we had to put on special “slippers” so we would not ruin the floors.

fancy slippers

We all looked very fahsionable. We were all allowed to take pictures (without flash only) except of the famous Amber Room. It looked amazing and I can’t believe that it took them almost 30 years to reconstruct it. I know it wasn’t allowed but I might have taken a few pictures of the room 😉 (was not the only one though lol).

cheese

After the tour through the palace we had a little walk in the garden. People have told me that it looks prettier in the summer with all the flowers etc but we had lotsa snow which made it look like a winter wonderland. As I mentioned earlier I could totally live there!!

grass??? lol

I don’t remember what time we were back at the hotel but we(aka the girls) did not have a lot of time to get ready. Most of us changed and put on some make up for the limousine tour which was after our dinner at the yummy sushi place. This time our waitor did not speak good English but he and his waitor friend laughed at us(or maybe even with us? lol) all the time. We had a good time. After dinner we rushed back to the hotel and then there was that little white shiny car waiting for us outside. We were all very excited and could not wait for the tour to start. The driver did not speak English but he got us 4 bottles of champagne which def. helped us to understand him better or maybe vice versa lol. The more I drank the better I felt…I think the alcohol kinda desinfected the germs and bacteria in my body lol.

yaaayy

some of us

inside

whad up?

We stopped a few times so people could smoke,take pictures and pee. Of course girls had a harder time to go pee as the public toilets were closed and we did not really feel like peeing on a tree. So we just kept it inside and almost died(but thats another story). We had 2 minor tragedies as 1 of us had to throw up cuz he had stomach problems(not because of the alcohol but food i guess) and another one just fainted twice. I have no idea why but it looked very scary. We dropped them off at the hotel and then we continued our last night. We went to some club(forgot the name) and the minute they noticed we were foreigners they tried to get money out of us. They wanted to have 2000 rubles deposit from each so we could get in. They told us we would get it back later…jajaja right come on we’re not THAT stupid! Then they just wanted 1000 rubles and after telling them that we’re gonna leave again they let us in for free.

The club was so much fun! There even was a pole in the middle of the dance floor where all those Russian girls tried to impress us with their prostitute-dance.

here we go

next time she gets dressed she should turn on the lights

Later that night we kinda took over the pole and used it for our fun dances and I think those Russians where mad at us. I could not have cared less. I am not sure what time we left that club but I remember that I fell asleep there.Not because I was drunk but because I was so tired(loooooooooong day). Thank god Jacque joined me and napped as well lol.

Back at the hotel we went to the hotel bar and had a little snack. Don’t remember what time we left the bar either as I fell asleep AGAIN lol. When I was in my room I was so tired that I did not even take off my make up but fell right into bed which I regretted when I woke up the next morning lol.

Nothing spectacular happened on Sunday. Just some packing and then we checked out the church right across our hotel. I liked this one better than the “colorful church” because people actually went there to pray and there were priests. Very interesting but still a bit scary as those old Russians in there gave us evil looks even though we behaved like professionals 😉

The train ride back was blaaaaaaaah. Whenever I fell asleep I was woken up by customs, the people who check out your passport and visa like 10 times or the annoying sports team which consisted of loud 12 year old Finnish girls who steppped on my feet everytime they passed my seat. Life is hard!

We arrived in Helsinki at 10pm on Sunday and I was so glad when I was home and could fall into my precious bed before going back to class Monday morning and falling sleep in class.

All in all I can say that I had an amazing time in Russia even though the people kinda scared me (a lot). Thank you to all my ladies and my lords for making me drink vodka shots like a Russian 😉

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I started the day by waking up early-ish to have breakfast with some friends and then we went to the “colorful church” because we wanted to go inside. It was snowing again and the snow melted right away so there was a lot of water on the streets. By the time we arrived at the church I had a lake in my boots. I had so much water in there that you could already hear it moving in there…sounds funny but it was fucking cold. Anyways, it was very pretty inside the church but I expected it to be more spectacular. It was just one big room.

church from inside

We had to hurry a bit as we had to be back at the hotel in time for the visit at the brewery. We took the metro to some weird place in St. Petersburg with lotsa snow and from there we were picked up by a bus. It was actually the first time this week where we were on time but of course the bs was not there so we had outside for like 30 minutes. That does not sound a lot but it feels like eternity when it is fucking cold. The guys used the opportunity to have another one of their famous snowball fights where they accidentally hit some cars which caused their alarm to go on. Nice sound…really! Eventually the bus came and it took us to the “baltica” brewery…Russia’s most famous brewery. It was actually kinda interesting…just the smell was bad! The best part was the “tasting”. All of us got to taste over 12 different beers.(I stopped counting after that one) Oh boy that was fun. I don’t even like beer but it was for free and I thought I’d use that opportunity 😉

beer number 5 was actually pretty good!the Asian one(blue bottle)tasted like detergent and made me wanna throw up

back in the metro station…with the present we got from the brewery

After that we had our fancy 4 course Russian dinner in some mansion. We experienced some more of that amazing Russian “service” all the foreigners get here.

1st course

1st course: weird salad

2nd course: soup called Borscht or sth like that

3rd course: Stroganoff

4th course: Blini(pancake)

The food was not that good. Not for that price at least. And I am not sure if it is supposed to be like that or if Russian food is supposed to be almost cold in general…cuz that was not the first time we had that…whatever. At least we had fun.

Back in the hotel some of us chilled out in the Hotel Bar and then finally we (aka me and 2 friends) ordered the limousine for tomorrow. It’s actually gonna be the biggest limousine in St.Petersburg: a Hummer. We’re gonna be 18 people and the limo is gonna take us through the city for 2 hours. Unfortunately we had to pay right away so it was lotsa fun(aka NOT) to knock on everybody’s door at 1 am to collect the money(650 rubles…which is like 15€…pretty cheap i think).

Anyways…I’m going to Russian dreamland now as I have to wake up again in not 6, not 5 but 4 hours again for our self-made sightseeing tour. And it better not snow otherwise there’s gonna be at least 1 mad German with wet feet in town!

Today was actually a very exciting day. We all visited a laundry chain today…in a very poor area of St.Petersburg. It was very weird to see all those old and ugly houses. I think this is the image everybody has of Russia, though.  A former student of my university opened a laundry service a few years ago which boomed in the St.Petersburg area. It was very exciting to listen to him and his stories but still I managed to fall asleep while sitting in front row. That’s just pure awesomeness!

After that we went back to the center(by metro…always an adventure and actually very dangerous but nobody got robbed or something…thank god!) and checked out the “Church of the Savior on Blood” (colorful church) again and the souvenir market. Matrioshkas are the most Russian thing you can get as a souvenir and they even had one of Michael Jackson. That was so funny.

me in front of the “colorful church”

MJ matrioshka

They also had some of Obama, Angela Merkel and even Osama bin Laden…exactly! Those Russiansare weird! As already mentioned in yesterday’s blog we went to the Hermitage. It was very beautiful! A lot of great and boring paintings. Some were actually quite nice but I think I was more attracted to the nice decorations and styles of the rooms. One was almost completely golden. It almost felt like home there lol. I’m not sure how much time we spent there but I guess it was almost like 3 hours. We had a guide…and I think she hated me because I think she noticed I was taking pictures without a permit…but seriously who is so dumb and buys a stupid permit for 200 rubles just to be able to take pictures? Cool and smart people just take pictures without a permit and if somebody asks then you just pretend you don’t understand them and/or didn’t know you needed a permit. Easy as that! 😉

Fleur & I in front of the Hermitage

view from inside

Hermitage from outside

Afterwards we went to eat at that great Sushi place we found yesterday. So yummy!!!!!!! I think we might go there again very soon lol.

Scandinavian Rolls

my yummy dessert!

Oh and guess what?? I think I saw the only kinda good-looking guy in Russia at the Sushi place tonight! He was not my type but he was kinda cute. Congratulations Russia! He was our waiter and even spoke English. What are the odds?

By the way, we did not do the limousine tour today as we did not have time. We will probably do it on Saturday night. We just hung out at a friend’s hotel room today and got 2 warnings by hotel security for being too loud again. Oopsie! And that security guy looked very scary!

Tomorrow I’ll get up early (or at least I’ll try to) and go inside the “Church of the Savior on Blood” before we all leave for a visit at a brewery. Of course there’s gonna be some free beer…and it better taste good! And after that all of us will have a typical Russian dinner. There’s gonna be 4 courses and I hope it will be very yummy lol. Let’s see if I get the chance to tell you about it tomorrow…just found out that the internet in the café downstairs (or hotel is kinda inside a shopping mall…that’s cool!)is free. But I am not sure if I will have time to go there. You’ll see. Oh and also we heard some gun shots today. We were just hanging out in our rooms and suddenly we heard shots…that was scary!

Jule in Russia:Day 3

Posted: November 11, 2009 in food, friends, fun, Travel, university
Tags: , ,

After an amazing amount of 1 hour of sleep and a little talk with Jacqueline we decided that we will postpone our early sightseeing session, go back to bed for another hour and meet up for breakfast. I still did not feel too good after the additional hour so I went back to sleep for 2 more after breakfast before we all had to meet up and went to the American Chamber of Commerce for 2 lectures. It was so funny to observe all the other people during the lecture. Everybody who had participated in our little party the night before was just dead. One of us even fell asleep during the lecture!(and it was not me!)

tired!!

After the lectures we wanted to go to the Ballet to see “Romeo & Juliet” but it was sold out…too bad. As we could not find the metro back to our hotel we decided to walk back. It was a long and cold walk but it was so nice to see the city at night. Some parts were a bit scary but mostly it was just beautiful despite those grumpy Russians 😉

that’s one of my fave pix from today!

We went to eat at a great Sushi place. Of course nobody spoke English there but we just used our awesome body language and ate like pigs because it was just too yummy.

pure awesomeness: Holland & Germany

yummy sushi

and dessert!!!

unfortunately we had to pay as well 😉

We’ll gonna go back with some more friends there tomorrow because it was awesome! And at the end our waitor even said “bye” to us. That was the only word he said at all that night (at least to us lol).

I am so proud of myself for not going out tonight! I think 85% of us went to some famous club here and I am feeling kinda bad for not going but I think my liver feels happy. I also feel a little sick (I had no voice this morning)and I think it’s good that I had a quiet night with some friends.

Tomorrow we’re gonna do some social and charity work and afterwards we’re going to the Hermitage. I’m kinda excited. Actually I am not that much into art but it’s the biggest art collection in the world and it’s cool to see that! In the evening some of us planned to book a limousine and cruise through the city. I hope it works out!!

Oh yeah, I still have not seen one hot Russian guy. What’s wrong with that city/country???I’ll try to take a picture of some very bad cases here. Just have to make sure they don’t notice as I’m scared they are gonna throw me into prison. And the girls are all so skinny…that’s depressive! But at least they are not as awesome as I am…and they never will be…eat this! 😉

Big hello (or maybe even good night/good morning) from Russia. I am in St.Petersburg now. I am on a study trip with my marketing course until Sunday night. It’s 3:51 am and I am kinda tired but I still wanna tell you a few things about my first impressions. Monday morning we took a train at 7am from Helsinki to St.Petersburg. The train ride was actually fun but quite exhausting. We arrived at 2:15pm Russian time. We had the rest of the day to ourselves. To be honest I don’t really remember what we did. We checked into our hotel and I think we tried to find some store to buy food/water. You can’t really drink tab water in Russia and brushing your teeth with that water might not be a good idea either.

looks pretty healthy though doesn’t it?

I think after we figured out that our hotel is actually located in a shopping mall we were kinda ok lol. We went to eat at some “pizza&Pasta” place which promised an English menu. It is really hard to find anything in English here. The restaurant sucked…but what do I know? lol. We spent the night at some friend’s hotel room…having a little party….pretty quiet one for Finnish standards but hotel security came at some point and let us know that we should better shut up. As all of us were(and still are) kinda scared of the Russians we kinda obeyed lol.

Today we went to some fancy university to have some lecture about Russian Business culture and we got to meet some nice Russian students. In general I can say that Russians are so damn unfriendly and they don’t (or they don’t want to) speak English. Their impoliteness really pisses me off. They don’t even look you in the eye and kinda treat you like shit. If I would not be so scared of them (they look really grumpy though!) I would actually go up to them and give them one of my awesome lectures and evil eyes!

We went to eat at some Russian place which I didn’t like. There are 2 reasons for that: 1st The food was crap, 2nd They treat you like shit. After that some of us went to the famous “colorful cathedral” as we like to say. It was so pretty. But as it was snowing the entire day, some of us thought it would be fun to have a little snow ball fight there. And they were right…it was fun…but cold! At some point I was convinced I had some kind of a swimming pool in my boots.

We spent the night at some other friend’s hotel room and played some drinking game which fucked up some of us pretty badly.(not me…seriously! Although there would have been enough reasons for that!I’m sure there’s gonna be some material on facebook pretty soon…)

Tomorrow or better said later we have to meet at 1pm to go to the American chamber of commerce and then the Ford company here…I think. But some of us(incl. me) thought it would be cool to meet p at 7.20 am, have breakfast and do some sightseeing before we have the meetings. At the moment I don’t feel very comfortable doing that. I just came back from the aforementioned party and I should get p again in 3 hours the latest…let’s see how it works out! I’ll try to keep you up to date. !

P.S people here are weird.girls look like prostitutes and guys are just…ugly. 😉