The End

It is time to end this blog.

With the death of my boyfriend, the love of my life, on 29.03.2017, I have experienced the turning point in my life. This blog remains a part of old me, a somewhat undisturbed, different personality. But it can no longer describe and sustain the new me.

I don’t know what happens now, but for all these years with me, I want to say thank you.

It’s been a lovely time.

 Soursunrise

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Belarus: The New Year

Belarus is surely a fairly unknown country, and because its conventional name in other language often includes “-russia” in some way, many people seem to confuse it with our big neighbour, especially culturewise. Anyhow, the answer to the question “So are you guys, like, Russian?” is not very simple, it’s both yes and no. We […]

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Belarus… again

It’s been ages. Literally ages. I’m so, so sorry I couldn’t find time to actually write something about Belarus and Minsk as I have promised last time. In fact, I couldn’t find time for so long, that my next trip to Minsk happened, where I’m writing from right now. But good news: There WILL be […]

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24 hours too late

I hope you’ve been well! So, now that I am a little bit set here in Belarus, I can start telling you more about the journey, as promised. Let’s begin from the very start, shall we? Little did I know when I left home at 3 AM on Tuesday, that in the next day I won’t be able […]

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How to pack like a pro

Have you already mastered the art of packing a suitcase? I happen to know quite a lot of people who literally pack in the last 30 minutes before the journey and stress out. Whether this is good or not, I am not one of them. Instead I strategically plan my whole packing process. In about 2 weeks […]

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Where’s my land?/Dzie moj kraj?

A little bit of introduction to Belarus in this wonderful poem by a Belarusian poet Uladzimir Karatkievich, transformed into a song and sung by Todar (Źmicier Wajciuszkiewic). Translation by me. Original Belarusian lyrics in latin transcription under the video.

Where is my land?
There, where Bielavieža is singing its eternal song,
Where the Neman in the West remembers the enemy’s blood,
Where in the Navahradak uplands severe towers are asleep,
And wooden houses look into the wide Dniapro.

You lie where blue Prypiać is tenderly winding,
Where Sofia floats over Dzvina like a ship…
Where my heart will beat like a hammer with the first step,
Even if I came to you blind and deaf.

What blind? Even when dead would I remember the high stars,
The flight of bats over the red and vague river,
white sail on the blue lakes, proud as the sea,
And oceans of woods, and the sky like pouring flax.

Where is my land?
Where people will never be slaves,
Who work for a simple soup in a hopeless prison.
Where young boys grow into strong tall oaks,
And men are like rocks – a blow, and the sword will be broken.

Where is my land?
Where the wise ancestors have lied to rest in the pines,
Where women are like joyful sleep in the stacks at sunrise,
And girls like precious rain, and silver-haired mothers,
like hay with cobwebs and a mild sun in the sky.

There sound the undying lyrics, sung with whole lungs,
There since ancient times sounds my tongue, a sharp blade,
That proud language, which even then will not be forgotten,
When the sun and the earth will disappear in the last darkness.

You are our land.
You are the red pear over grandfather’s house.
A phosphoric army of falling stars in November.
You are our flag that no one, no one in the world, no one
Can ridicule, spoil, forget, or fight with a sword.

We pledge to you with our first furrow on the field,
And with the last arable land, on which we will fall in affliction.
We swear to you that never, never but never,
Yes, never will we throw you away and forget you.

Dzie moj kraj?
Tam, dzie viečnuju piesniu piaje Bielavieža,
Tam, dzie Nioman na zachadzie pomnić varožuju kroŭ,
Dzie na ŭzvyššach Navahradskich dremliuć surovyja viežy
I viašniovyja chaty hliadziacca ŭ šyroki Dniapro.

Ty liažyš tam, dzie siniaja Prypiać laskava vijecca,
Dzie Safija plyvie nad Dzvinoju niby karabieĺ…
Tam, dzie serca majo z pieršym krokam, jak molat, zabjecca,
Kali b navat sliapym i hluchim ja pryjšoŭ da ciabie.

Što sliapym? Navat miortvym uspomniu vysokija zory,
Nad rakoju čyrvonaj i cmianaj paliet kažanoŭ,
Biely vietraź na sinich, na hordych, jak mora, aziorach
I bary-akijany, i nieba – razlivy iĺnoŭ.

Dzie moj kraj?
Tam, dzie liudzi nikoli nie buduć rabami,
Što za poliŭku nosiać jarmo ŭ bieznadziejnaj turmie,
Dzie asilki-chlapcy maladymi ŭzrastajuć dubami,
A mužčyny, jak skaly, – udaryš, i zlomicca mieč.

Dzie moj kraj?
Tam, dzie mudryja prodki ŭ chvojach pasnuli,
Dzie žančyny, jak radasny son u stahach na zary,
A dziaŭčaty, jak doždž zalaty. A sivyja matuli,
Jak žniŭjo z pavucinniem i dobraje sonca ŭhary.

Tam zviniać nieŭmiručyja piesni na poŭnyja hrudzi,
Tam spradvieku hučyć maja mova, bulatny klianok,
Taja hordaja mova, jakuju j tady nie zabudziem,
Kali sonca z ziamlioju ŭ apošni zahlybiacca zmrok.

Ty – naš kraj.
Ty – čyrvonaja hruša nad dziedaŭskim domam,
Listapadaŭskich zničak hustych fasfaryčnaja rać,
Ty – naš sciah, što nikomu, nikomu na sviecie, nikomu
Niedamo absmiajać, apahanić, zabyć ci miačom zvajavać.

My klianiomsia tabie baraznoj svajoj pieršaj na poli,
I apošniaj rallioj, na jakuju ŭpadziom u žurbie.
My klianiomsia tabie, što nikoli, nikoli, nikoli,
Tak, nikoli nia kiniem, nia kiniem, nia kiniem ciabie.

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Mysterious Lands

So in about three weeks I’m going back to Belarus to stay in Minsk and mostly Zhabinka (Brest voblast) for 14  days.

As I haven’t been there for a very long time, I suppose a lot of things will be new for me, and some things will be found just as they were left. Either way, I’d like to document what I discover and share it with you guys, because I believe not many of you have heard anything about my home country, apart from it being a super-soviet, poor, dictatorship-driven land (which I think is actually quite far from truth :P).

I would like to show you Belarus through the prism of a multinational person, and I would like to emphasise especially what I value and love about this Eastern European country.

So far I don’t know in what format exactly I will present this mini-project. For sure there will be photos, most probably with descriptions. However, I might also include videos, sounds, stories etcetera. I hope it will be interesting. Can’t wait to share!

Yours,
V. ❤

P.S. I made a new tag for this one – Blue-Eyed Belarus. I will be publishing stuff there 🙂

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Summer of our youth

Whatever, my paper can wait. – me, shortly before the deadline Ah, now isn’t this a miracle of youth? Somehow far away places start calling me and all I want to do is to feel sun rays on my skin, and to eat unhealthy tasty food, and to hug the people I like for no apparent reason. […]

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Questions

You have to ask and answer questions to live instead of surviving.  Have you ever thought what you live for? What is the reason behind your studies? Behind your job? Behind your hobbies or your gym membership card? Do you feel happy in this very instant? Or are you trying to achieve a distant goal, […]

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