My first Russian breakfast - salad, scrambled eggs. sausages, and little Russian pancake things, sat with Nadja, Merritt and Leonard
1st on the agenda was the Hermitage museum located inside the Winter Palace - Our guide only took us to the most famous pieces in the museum as 'if you look at each piece in the museum for 1 minute then it would take 11 years to see everything' - simply amazing!! I was awestruck by the Winter Palace, it was a bit overwhelming thinking of all the people who had walked the very same corridors at some point in history (including Anastasia Romanov!! - exciting for me...) and couldn't help but try and imagine what it would have been like to live in a place like that. Going through my photos now I didnt realise how many photos of ceilings I had taken! I swear every room I walked into the 1st thing I photographed was the ceiling, I have never seen such detailed decoration on ceilings before, absolutely amazing. On our tour we went into the ballroom, Maygen and I danced together so we can now say that we have danced in the ballroom of the Winter Palace!!
The Winter Palace/Hermitage
Wierd to think who else has walked on this same floor
On the staircase in the entry to the Winter Palace
One of my many ceiling photos
Dancing in the Winter Palace ballroom - PHOTOGRAPHIC EVIDENCE!!!
coz everybody just randomly has a door this awesome in their house...
Yet another ceiling photo
My new best friend
Was trying to tell what he was looking at but still have no clue - what a let down
Amazing floor design
Another ceiling/staircase photo :P
Maygen and I attempted to ghost a Russian on the way to the restaraunt for lunch but we were caught early - damn reflection in car windows!!
Lunch: we went to an underground restaraunt place where we had a meal orgasnised for us.
Started with a salad and some bread - salad was extremely salty
Random shot down the table
Poor Kari (guy who organised the whole trip) got this present from the Russians serving us becuase it was April Fools.
Next we had Borsht - kind of soup thing, tasted pretty good :)
Then came this which was kind of like chicken parmajana with a side of potatoes
Then came desert which was similar to lettu (not that you guys have tried lettu but anyway :P lettu = Finnish pancakes)
After lunch we went to Kunstkamera museum which was Peter the Great's hobby. He wanted to prove that deformities like 2 headed animals and conjoined twins were due to scientific reasons not because they were being punished by God. It was kind of disturbing to see as there were babies, severed heads etc in jars in cabinets and skeletons of conjoined twins, Peter the Greats best friends heart, and many more creepy things which we got to look at, gave me a sick feeling in my stomach - it was one of those things were you want to look away but can't, I was thinking about how strange a thing it was for Peter the Great to collect, I mean some people collect stamps... to each their own I guess aha I will admit it was interesting in a twisted kind of way. Apparently when Peter the Great first started the collection he wanted all Russians to come and see it but nobody was interested - then he decided to give a free shot of Vodka to those who came to see it and there were lines for blocks of people trying to go see it aha!
In the evening we went to a folklore performance at Nikolayevsky palace, there is a palace on almost every block it is insane! Anyway, there was a singing group that were really amazing - the acoustics in the room were really good so the powerful notes would vibrate through your skull they were really talented. Then there was the dancing group - Russian dancing is so difficult yet they make it look effortless! I have some pictures
this was one guy yet he did an entire performance as two people in a headlock fighting, it looked impossible for the things he was doing to be just 1 person but then at the end he stood up showing it was only 1 person - WOW MOMENT!!
Then we got back to the hotel and most people hung out in the lounge until curfew.