MY HUSBAND’S IMPRESSIONS OF SAMARA
After three full days in Samara, Ken is ready to share some impressions of Samara with my blog readers. Keep in mind that he is new to foreign travel and not a huge fan of big cities. So he’s stretching a bit … more than a bit. I’m really proud of him, actually.
Let’s get the dislikes over with first …
“I found the border experience unwelcoming. They made me feel like we were ‘up to something’ instead of being just retired tourists here to visit friends.”
“Samara seems (so far) like a ‘typical’ big city — old and dirty in places — clean and improving in others. The old buildings that have undergone restoration look great. The ones falling down are sad to see.
Now for the LIKES …
“Our hotel (the Holiday Inn) is real nice. All the staff have been friendly, smiling, helpful and accommodating. The bed is big – and not too hard. Plenty of hot water that comes instantly out of the tap – even on the 8th floor where we are. The hotel cuisine is delicious.
We have a great view of the beautiful Volga. The embankment (river walk) is awesome. And we are only one block away.
Loved the concert (Beatles Blues) in the Philharmonic and thought it was a wonderful venue.
Enjoyed the history lesson of the city by Volodya Valkov and the home-cooked meal by Natasha Valkova (especially the vinegretta salad).
My main reason for coming was to meet Jeanette’s friends, and so far (as expected) they have all been wonderful people. It’s too bad our respective governments can’t get along as well as we do as individuals. I’m looking forward to more meet ups and also seeing the countryside and village life. These are my impressions of Samara, so far. ”