Technologically and linguistically adventurous EFL teacher, trainer, writer and manager

Maidan, 8th March 2014

Today I had a tour of Kiev.

Outside the bell tower of Saint Sophia’s Cathedral, I saw my first memorial to those who died during the protests on Maidan.

Flowers and candles for those who died on Maidan

I got my first views of Maidan from the top of the tower.

Maidan from Saint Sophia's Cathedral

Maidan from Saint Sofia's Cathedral

Burnt-out building on Maidan

It was strange to think that this was the same place I had seen burning on TV, and where people had had to jump out to try and save their lives.

I saw my first barricade outside St. Michael’s Cathedral. Students had fled into the complex to escape from the police at the beginning of the protests in November 2013.

Barricade

There were also tents outside St. Michael’s Cathedral, which I didn’t realise, as I thought all of the protesters were living on Maidan.

Protestors outside St. Michael's Cathedral

After the tour, I went around Maidan with a woman who had been there on the worst day, the day when the Trade Unions building was burnt. She told me about her experiences, and those of her son and daughter. I cried. It was eerily quiet considering the number of people there. Night fell while we walked around.

From now on, whenever I smell woodsmoke, I will remember Maidan.

When I see red carnations, I will remember Maidan.

The people will not leave until they are sure those who run their country are doing it right. The people who came from all over Ukraine to fight for their rights, people from Kiev, Kharkiv, Crimea, Lvov, and many other places. Politicians will no longer be allowed to line their pockets at the expense of the people. And the people who died in the square will not have died in vain.

These are a selection of the photos I took on the square.

Tyres at the entrance to Maidan

Photos of those who died

Photos of those who died – I was told the black faces represent those who are still unknown, although I wonder if they belong to policemen

Photos of those who died

Bridge in the square

The slogans say things like ‘End the corteges’ (‘cortege’ is like a motorcade) and ‘Heavenly hundred’ (the people who died)

Trade Unions building

Trade Unions building

Flowers and barricades

 

The stage

 

Statues holding Ukraine flags

 

Flowers

Flowers Protesters' tent Clock

Long live the heroes

Long live the heroes

Kid's drawings

Bridge and Trade Unions building

Flowers and candles

Tyres beyond the bridge

Ukraine peace cranes  Barricades and the Trades Union building

Ash covered the square

Ash covered the square

Sack barricades  Flowers  Trade Unions Building behind the barricades  Banners and the Hotel Ukraine

Christmas tree flags

Christmas tree flowers  Stage in the twilight  Christmas tree, column, and the Hotel Ukraine  Remembering the dead  Remembering the dead

Paving stones which had been torn up

Paving stones which had been torn up

Tents and the square

Exit

Exit – the camp was very well organised

Paving stones which had been torn up  Tyre barricades  Tyre barricades

Souvenir sellers are already on the square

Souvenir sellers are already on the square

An interesting sculpture  Flowers and candles  Street barricadeThe clean-up job has already started. Some of the stones that were ripped up have been replaced. Some of the rubbish is being taken away. There is a long way to go until the square returns to normal.

There is a long way to go until Ukraine becomes a 21st-century democracy.

But the first steps have been taken.

 

Comments on: "Maidan, 8th March 2014" (9)

  1. I hope everything gets back to normal soon!
    Take care and stay safe!

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  2. Thank you so much for sharing your 1st-hand experiences with us, Sandy. It’s so nice to get this perspective in addition to what we’re seeing in the news. Please continue but (repeating myself here) please stay safe!!

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  3. The pictures truly tell a thousand words. This is very moving and sad that people had to lose their lives to move towards a more democratic government. They still have a long way to go – I hope that they succeed in their desires.
    Thank you again for sharing a first hand view if the situation

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  4. I was also going to say that the pictures speak a thousand words. Actually, I just did.

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  5. Thank you Sandy. Has your visit changed your perspective from the one you got in Crimea? Do you think that the opposition is fascist or is this Russian propaganda trying to make people disbelieve the democratic hopes of the Ukrainians? We get conflicting news here, made worse by the words of the Russian ministers v the pictures we see. As always take care. Xxxx

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    • Hi Marian,
      I’m in the process of writing a post about all of that, which will hopefully be published tomorrow when I get back to Sevastopol, as I’ll be spending most of the next 17 hours on the train! 🙂 Thanks for your message,
      Sandy

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  6. LoisJBolton said:

    Sandy your words and pictures are quite moving. It is invaluable to have a first-hand, personal perspective. Thank you for your factual yet impassioned observations.

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  7. […] life is continuing as normal away from Maidan (where the main protests took place), and even on Maidan there was a very subdued atmosphere. Even when I was out at night with my friend, I felt […]

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  8. […] normally ‘What was it like there?’ and they are surprised when I say it was fine. Even Maidan was calm when I was […]

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