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On the cover
7 (2014)
Tunnelling Towards Hope

28 February - 6 March 2014

Ukraine History

A Stronghold of Rulers and Rebels

With the recent death toll jumping to nearly 100 and 1,000 injured, Hrushevskoho Street, one of the strongholds of EuroMaidans three-month-long protests, made headlines around the globe. It was here, on 19 January the countrys stand against government corruption, abuse of power, and the violation of human rights turned from peaceful protest to all-out revolution. Having witnessed much over the years, Hrushevskoho is a street with a history, and not only care of recent days.


Ukraine Today
Acelebrity using their status and intelligence to influence public views and opinion is rarely seen in modern society, even less so in Ukraine. Here, the majority of celebs use their time, effort, and money to enhance or further their career rather than put their name to something that can do good for others. However, as EuroMaidan intensifies, some are making themselves heard and they fall either side of the EuroMaidan divide.
It used to be that when rebellion and revolution occurred, the intellectual, creative, and spiritual elite would be front and centre.


Ukrainian Culture

When Walls Can Talk

People have been writing on walls since the dawn of civilisation, we call it graffiti, and ranges from simple written words to elaborate wall paintings. Sometimes it is merely the creator wanting to leave his or her mark; sometimes there is an underlying social or political reason. And it is due to the latter that graffiti has exploded across Kyiv in recent months. Anti dictator messages aside, we peel back a few layers of paint to look at graffiti in the city in general.


Kyiv Culture

Advice for Single Men

Its Mens Day this week, which used to be known and is still often referred to as Red Army Day, and this historic title gives a better flavour of what its about. Its a day for men to be men, and for women to treat their men as such. Lets be honest, even although Valentines Day has just past and Womens Day is rapidly approaching, these sorts of holidays are days when men do even more for their women than every other day of the year. But Mens Day is the one day when we get the chance to be treated the way we deserve. So this day, above all others, is not a day to be single. And come on, if youre a single man in Kyiv, weve gotta ask: What the hell you doing man?

If youre a single man in Kyiv, you deserve sympathy and advice so that hopefully those long cold nights will soon become long and hot instead.  Ukrainian women are different from the women you might be used to back home they are beautiful and they pride themselves in it; they are feminine and like to take good care of their appearance; they are intelligent and philosophical, sensitive and delicate; and their view of dating and relationships is not the same as that in current day America or Europe.

The Goods News
Lets start with the silver lining you may look like a sack of potatoes thats sprouting hairs from being left in the sun for three weeks, and then battered with a stick, but youre still in with a chance. Ukrainian girls, while they love to look after themselves, arent so hung up on the looks of their men as their western counterparts. Good clothes, however, will impress (and an iPhone), but apart from that, the sort of man you are and how you behave is far more important.
Lets start with locations for meeting ladies theres a million of them around town. In fact, even the metro or the street have lots of potential. As far as clubs and bars are concerned, its a case of take your pick. Places such as Decadence and Buddha Bar are worth a visit if youre looking for really glamourous ladies. And of course theres the never ending circuit of new places opening up (Crystal Hall and D-Lux being the most recent additions to Kyivs nightlife scene) where youre going to find those who like to keep up with the most recent trends.
The danger with these places is the chances are higher youll meet girls whore more likely to empty your wallet long before love enters the equation, but that might be okay with you. If, however, youre looking for something with a little more emotion in the equation, then there are other places to go, places where the ladies might not be so mercenary.
Places where you might meet such ladies would be just about any of the bars around town, such as Violas, 44 or a Bochka or two, and for clubbing why not try somewhere like Tsar Project or Shooters.

What a Woman Wants
As previously stated, Ukrainian ladies are not so hung up on looks. In fact, its quite low on their list. What is far more important is how you behave. Now, every girl here has been hit on a million times, and when you first approach youre likely to receive an icy blast of indifference, and you possibly may even receive a look of disdain you thought was only ever reserved for dog shit on the shoe. But this is nothing personal; it is probably how she would respond to everyone but Brad Pitt. So dont take offence. Dont be hurt. What you need to do now is persevere. Ukrainian ladies admire strong men who go after what they want, and if you give up at the first hurdle youre out of there. So dont get huffy.
Confidence and determination is what she wants to see from you, so you need to act like her brush off was nothing, keep smiling, and keep talking. Humour is everything at this point, so make her laugh, and get her talking. Offer to buy her a drink of course generosity of heart is one thing, but generosity itself is better. 
Compliments are expected, but dont tell her shes beautiful she knows that already. Instead, pick out a specific feature and tell her how unique it is. Eyes, hair, nose, bum, legs, whatever it is that catches your eye, tell her, and tell her with passion. Also, be aware that Kyiv girls, under the brusque exterior, have very kind hearts they hate to hurt people. So as a last resort, seek a little sympathy. You may just touch her heart. 
Its important at this point to bear in mind that contact is all youre looking for at this stage. You want some conversation. You want to know her. Nothing more. At least, thats what she needs to think. Buy her a few drinks, be interested in her and interesting to her, and get her number. Dont try and take her home, youre more than likely to blow it if you do.

Winning Her Heart
Now you have her number you have to relax and take it easy. A Kyivlanka responds well to allure, and badly to a man who is pushy. Dating is a slow and evocative process in Ukraine. You have to woo her. But gently. For sure, send her an sms to let her know youre thinking about her, but a little bit of mystery is going to go a long way. Wait a while before asking her out on a date. 
Contrary to popular belief, not all Ukrainian girls need to be taken to somewhere hugely expensive to be impressed. But you should take her somewhere nice. And flowers are an integral part of dating culture here, so youre going to win yourself lots of brownie points by having a small but beautiful bunch in your hand when she meets you. Shes going to be incredibly disappointed if you dont. And shes only going to ask for them at some point, so save you and her the embarrassment with a pre-emptive botanic strike.
Be gentle with her, and polite, but be strong as well. As previously stated, women here are attracted to strength of personality, so dont let her walk all over you. A polite but firm rebuttal will work wonders for her view of you if shes becoming overly self-assured. In fact, an impolite one can work well too, but it has to be delivered properly with the right level of nonchalance. If you go down this route youre treading on very thin ice, so be careful.
By now you should be well on the road to love, but shes a long way from admitting it. Theres still a lot of work to be done more dates (which can include anything from coffee and dessert to a night at the Opera House); more attention combined with some subtle indifference; more flowers (but not every time, its good to keep her guessing); in fact, more of everything.
Most importantly of all, take your time! Enjoy the experience. Savour the moments you spend in her company. Get to know her, and let her get to know you. Its a wonderful life, Kyiv is a wonderful town, and shes a wonderful girl!

Richard Caldwell

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Comments (3)
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Onelittlebear | 23.02.2010 15:48

Somehow you missed mine too :)
Happy feb.23rd! Hope you find love this evening;)

Editor | 23.02.2010 11:00

Somehow one thinks you missed the tone of irony :)

Onelittlebear | 23.02.2010 10:06

This is a guide for desperate dudes/expats on how to get laid and pick up hookers in public places.
Primitive advises will work on white trash 17 y.o. girls.
Man, are you THAT desperate? this is pathetic!

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    Ukraine Truth
    Rights We Didnt Know We Had

    Throughout EuroMaidan much has been made of Ukrainians making a stand for their rights. What exactly those rights are were never clearly defined. Ukraine ratified the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1952. The first article of the Declaration states all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights, they are endowed with reason and conscience, and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood. The ousted and overthrown Ukrainian government showed to the world they dont understand the meaning of these words.

    Kyiv Culture

    Pulling Strings
    Located on Hrushevskoho Street the epicentre of EuroMaidan violence, home to battles, blazes and barricades childrens favourite the Academic Puppet Theatre had to shut down in February. Nevertheless, it is getting ready to reopen this March with a renewed repertoire to bring some laughter back to a scene of tragedy. Operating (not manipulating) puppets is a subtle art that can make kids laugh and adults cry. Whats On meets Mykola Petrenko, art director of the Theatre, to learn more about those who pull the strings behind the show.


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