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2009 Sep by Jorge Sanchez
Early in the morning I arrived to Rostov on Don and immediately bought a bus ticket to Taganrog, a town in the Sea of Azov. The reason was to my desire to visit the house/museum where was born Anton Chekhov, the author of the renowned Chaika (Seagull).|
After one hour and a half drive I reached Taganrog, a port city founded by Peter I. Today it has a population of about 260.000 souls.
I walked to the market where there were dozens of kiosks selling watermelons, and just outside of the market I saw an imposing metallic statue devoted to Anton Chekhov. I asked a watermelon vendor where the house/museum of Chekhov was, and he advised me to take the street Chekhov, almost until the end, in direction to the Sea of Azov.
After 20 minutes walking I could see his house and visited it.
Chekhov was a doctor, and wrote as a hobby at the beginning, to earn extra money. As he said: “Medicine is my wife, while literature is my lover”.
Then, once in the Sea of Azov I sat down in a cafeteria and asked for a beer Baltika 7 to celebrate that I had reached for the first time in my life the Sea of Azov.
Back in Rostov on Don, a city of around one million inhabitants, I walked to the downtown until I distinguished the Cathedral, called Virgin Nativity. Asking for its history to the faithful people inside the Cathedral I learnt that it had been destroyed by the communists, and then restored in modern times. The market was surrounding the Cathedral all around, selling all kind of products, mainly watermelons.
I then asked another watermelon seller for the River Don, and he pointed me out a street. I descended it and finally I reached the River Don, where I saw many restaurants in form of boats, plus cruises full of tourists. Rostov on Don was a very touristy and pretty town, but all the tourists were Russians.
In Rostov on Don the weather was very pleasant, even hot.
The building of the Duma, in the main street, was pretty looking, and many of its inhabitants are Armenians (Rostov-on-Don is twinned with Yerevan) and there is even an Armenian Consulate in the city.
The only negative aspect of Rostov on Don that I experimented was the controls at the railways station entrance, the searching of bags, like in the airports, and I, having a “black” or “chorni” aspect, was searched especially when the policemen saw that I was not a poor citizen of Russian Caucasian republics, but form Spain, a country that they consider rich, synonym of money. First they asked me money “for a beer” and I said not. Then they ordered me to put all that I had in my pockets over the table, and then they started to play with me. The militia holding my money was looking for a moment of distraction to rob me some notes, but I never took my eyes off that man and his hand. Finally, realizing that I was not an inexpert traveller, returned me the money and let me go inside the railway station.
When darkness fell I took a night bus to Voronesh Oblast.
2007 Apr by Veikko Huhtala*
We arrived to Rostov from Krasdonar by taxi. Before Krasdonar we were already driven by taxi through Caucasus Republics from Dagestan to Adygeya. From Rostov City we made trip to Azov town on Azov Sea, 45 km from Rostov City. River Don is flowing through the capital and its banks are full of restaurants and bars. We stayed some time in one terrace drinking couple of Russian beer. Rostov on Don is the tenth largest city in Russia with population more than one million. From there we continued our trip by train to north towards Moscow. |