24 juni 2013

St. Petersburg

Saint Petersburg: A big modern city with big streets, huge buildings and a bustling life. Through the cathedrals, musea and palaces you sense the history of town. The thousands of people, cars, tourists, advertisements, MacDonalds, hipsters, skaters, drifters, wifi-points and coffee shops makes it a modern town. the fact that almost every historic building has at least one facade packed for construction makes you feel that there's money, there's money to restore the city.
 
It's snowing in St. Petersburg, it's snowing little white fluffy things...I guess it's a sign of the spring, or of the famous Russian white nights you have here in the city from May till somewhere in July, nights that hardly get dark. Before the sun can settle down behind the horizon, it's almost time for it to get back up again. Again a place where you can completely forget about time and forget to go to bed. The next few weeks it will only get lighter and lighter at night tilll we reach above the polar circle and won't see darkness at all.
During these white nights, the bridges in St. Petersburg open up for a few hours. If you happen to be on the 'wrong' side, it's bad luck. You either wait (which can go up to 3 hours) or you have to take a long detour. Like I experienced after a drink in the bar with my fellow mates.

After a few loud nights at the 'yacht club" on Krestovsky Island where the rich and famous drive there big Mercedes to party all night, we sail of on Sunday night. This time the bridges of St Petersburg do not open up just for the big cargo ships that go up and downstream on the Neva river, but as well for us sailing up the river. It's beautiful to experience the city from the water. We can enjoy the few hours of darkness when the city is lit up by small lights and the facades of the winter palace and the Peter and Paul Fortress and many other sites make the town look even more magical.

Upstream we slowly sail up the river Neva to another part of Russia. It's gonna be an interesting ride. There will (hopefully) be some sailing, there will be numerous visits to old monasteries, churches and places of the past in the Karilian area. The Finnish battled the Russian for many years and their past present is still noticable.

Twelve boats, lead by Peter the first, sailing up the river Neva to conquer the Russian waters, I'm curious where this trip will take us.

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