Moscow to St. Petersburg - 2011

Uglich

Uglich

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

We had the entire morning to relax.  We attended a lecture about the Romanov Dynasty.  We also had a briefing about what we’ll be doing in St.  Petersburg.  After lunch we made the first stop of our cruise in the provincial town of Uglich.  It has a population of 30,000 and dates back to 1148.  It was a favorite town of Ivan the Terrible, and it was here that his heir Prince Dmitry, who was about 9 years old, was murdered by order of Boris Gudunov, who wanted the throne.  A church was built on the site of the murder and is called the Church of St.  Dmitry on the Blood.  We went inside the church and saw frescos (one depicting the murder) and many beautiful icons.  We also visited the Cathedral of Our Savior’s Transfiguration, where services are still held.  Our guide said that the benches are only for tourists--they have to stand the entire time of the service.  We stopped in a former church and listened to five men sing “The Volga Boatmen” and one religious song.  They were very good.

The area we visited was called the Kremlin (fort).  The original city wall was made of wood and burned in the 1700s.  After the tour, some of us went on home visits.  Our host was a teacher of the Russian language and literature.  Her home had a large garden and she had lots of flowers and vegetables growing.  She told us about her family, we (13 of us) told about ours, and we drank 3 toasts of homemade vodka: the first to our health, the second to friendship, and the third “to us.” She served dark bread and pickles with the vodka and also tea from a beautiful samovar.  We asked her questions and she told us (through our Viking tour guide/interpreter) about life in Uglich.  Someone asked her if things were better or worse after perestroika.  Her opinion was that it was worse, because people were friendlier and helped each other before and became more materialistic and less compassionate after perestroika.  There were 3 college professors in our group and Jay visited with the head of the computer science department at his alma mater, the University of Nebraska in Lincoln.  We stopped at some shops in the marketplace and bought two Christmas ornaments.  We had dinner tonight with a nice couple from Santa Cruz CA.

Photos

It rained overnight and the skies were overcast in the morning.  By the time we went on our tour the temperature was in the low 60s with some wind, but it was really quite pleasant.

The Moscow Canal

The Volga River - Kalyazin Bell Tower

The Volga River - Lock of Uglich

Uglich - Church of St. Dmitry on the Blood

Uglich

Uglich - Transfiguration Cathedral

Uglich - Transfiguration Cathedral

Uglich - Transfiguration Cathedral

Uglich - Church of St. Dmitry on the Blood

Uglich - Church of St. Dmitry on the Blood

Uglich - Home visit

Uglich - Home visit

Uglich - Home visit

© JAY DEITCH 2020