After an eventful few days and a bumpy bus ride, I made to Odessa, Ukraine. I had no idea what to expect. As always, the extent of my research was having a quick look at a map and thinking "Yeah, why not".

 
Great weather graced my stay in this great city. The Potemkin Stairs, leading down to the Harbour.

Great weather graced my stay in this great city. The Potemkin Stairs, leading down to the Harbour.

 

The first evening spent there would be one of night-time wandering. Having quickly dropped off my backpack, I walked to the CLINGS and CLONGS from the noisy and central Odessa Harbour, through the soothing calmness of a city asleep... and finally, to the sunrise in the early hours. These just might have inspired a ukulele melody, recorded a few days later, at 3.am on the famous Potemkin stairs. Here sandwiched between a bit of Odessa-touring, for your convenience.

 
 

Of course there is much more to Odessa than pieces of stone that help you down from the center to the Harbour. For a start, historically, it is a city which was thriving during the XIXth century through the likes of Catherine The Great and Frenchman Richelieu, the special guests featured in the video above. A century which is clearly showcased by the beautiful buildings in the center of the city. Not only that, it is also, quite simply put, a very nice place.

Odessa has got it's own special identity in the country. First and foremost it is the great Sea-city, with its own heritage, its own non-official t-shirt (the blue sailor-striped top). It also has its own charachter, a mix of many nationalities sailing in and out for more than two-hundred years. And lastly its own absurd and bity humour, which can be explained by the a stong jewish community in the XIXth century. I din't get the humour though. Or anything anybody said, my Russian being exactly like most people's English here: non-existent.

 
 

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As you can "sea" above, even though the center's Potemkin stairs lead down to the busy port, a short bus-ride can lead you to enjoyable beaches. And if you weren't lucky enough to catch anything with your bare hands, you can drop by the big Privoz market and get a few dried fish for your afternoon snack. I'm off for lunch.

 
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