It was three months ago today that we left Kyiv, shocked and scared. We are now in a holiday resort in South Africa, but we are not on holiday. We are still in a state of shock but we are not scared any more. We are unsure though about the future and for now it feels like we are treading water. And that can be exhausting.
I was born in South Africa and I love it here. But my soul was restless and in Kyiv I had found a magical world that was my happy place. I am very grateful that as I write this we are comfortable and safe. Everyday I count my blessings. But all we want is to return to Kyiv.
Most people I know had very little knowledge of Kyiv, if anything at all, until I told them about it. And those who came with me there, who walked the streets and took in the vibe, always wanted to return. Kyiv is a creative center, a place full of energy and spirit, with a booming IT industry, and incredible eating, culture, beauty, adventure … I could go on and on. And just a short time ago I had never heard of a mugging or anything related to crime in Kyiv, and then, just like that, life changed. War came to town.
Magical Kyiv are two words you often hear when people talk about this ancient city. A place where life is embraced to the fullest and where people laugh with their souls. The sense of humour one experiences in Ukraine is so opposite to the stupid stereotype, which will soon change. Ukraine is finally on the map, and it will stay on the map. Putin will not change the face of Europe. If that were to happen it means that evil has won, and I just cannot believe that is possible.
An interesting thing to observe is the currency in Ukraine which has hardly dropped in value since the start of the war. Ukrainians are not panicking and their confidence is reflected in the value of their currency. Also, cinemas opened again in Ukraine the weekend before last. Some rays of light.
Please God this insane war ends soon.