viernes, 6 de enero de 2017

Minsk (II): green, wide and clean

Lovely Loshitsky
After a not so pleasant fourteen hour long bus trip and a long night’s sleep, it was time to see Minsk. My friend Zhenia took me to Loshitsky Park, which surprised me because of how calm it was considering the city centre was not too far away. Really charming place. In fact, one of the most noticeable things about Minsk is how green it is.

Check the front door: it's open!
After a summer with really horrible weather in Warsaw I didn’t expect sun, no clouds and almost thirty degrees in Minsk, but each and everyone of them was very welcome. At least I welcomed them, although I’m afraid that people who were travelling by bus didn’t agree with me. As every other place in Eastern Europe, things are prepared for the cold and when the weather is hot, some places get VERY hot so buses, for example, had their front doors open so their drivers wouldn’t literally melt and leave the passengers slightly unprotected.

Independence Avenue

Once there was nothing else to see in the park we went for a walk around the centre and the old town (which, I have to admit disappointed me a bit). Another interesting thing about Minsk is how huge the avenues are. Warsaw has some wide avenues, but nothing compared to Minsk, or at least that’s the impression I got. To top all this grandeur, the names of the main places were really patriotic: Independence Square, Independence Avenue and so on.

Don't be fooled, this was a very good party area
When we had done enough sightseeing to make me feel at peace with myself, we went for a beer in a very interesting place, a street which had been once full of industrial factories and in which some bars and party places had slowly sprouted. By then, another friend had joined. She introduced us to some people, including a couple that had hitchhiked around the world and had written a book about it.

Strangely enough, we went home at 9pm. One of the few things I regret from this trip is not exploring the nightlife, shame on me. A problem with one of my friends put me in a weird mood and, as I write about this trip almost several months after coming back, I realize I didn't enjoy it as much as I could have. Still, in the next couple of days I'd see many more interesting places.