Travel to Ukraine Guide
Written by Russian/Ukrainian interpreter for mail order brides
Hi, my name is Galyna. After few years of interpreting for American man who are looking to find a wife from Ukraine or Russia, I have decided to write a little guide. I hope this book will help you to be better prepared for your trip to Ukraine.
In this book you will find all of the necessary information you need in Ukraine. Also I am going to tell you few real stories about some of my clients , so you will learn on their mistakes and not on your own.
I was born in Ukraine during the Soviet Union era where we were forbidden to talk about USA or democracy. I do remember when I went any governmental building had a Lenin’s photo on it. IN the school each morning they would make us sing a soviet union hymn, while holding our hand to the head and made us say “ Lenin never died, he always with us” , I even had an argument with my cousin, who was bigger God or Lenin. Anyway, after Soviet Union crashed, things were bad; it was hard for the country to get up on their feet, when Ukraine became independent. The shelves in stores were empty; long lines to the stores at 6am to get a loaf of bread, we had nothing to eat, rise of Ukrainian mafia, a lot of people lost all of their savings in the banks due to the Soviet Union crash. But we made through that period. Finally we got our own currency “ grivnya” and month by month, year by year, Ukraine started to become more democratic and getting up on its feet. But the one thing that never died after the Soviet Union collapsed is corruption.
It was there during the soviet and it is very visible in Ukraine right now. SO anyway, this is where I grew up, but no matter, whether it was a soviet union or independent Ukraine, I always had same dream- to meet American Man and bring Russia and USA to piece. Unfortunately, I wasn’t the one that brought the cold war down ( piece) between Russia and USA, but I did marry American Man. It was all possible due to my dear friend OKsana, who is currently happily married to an Austrian man, Oksana, In 2000 she introduced me to the wonders of the internet and dating sites. With the help of my brother who is currently successful business owner of well known hosting site, Yuriy, I uploaded my photo on the kiss.com ( this is an American site) but back in 2000 they allow foreners to post their profiles. But later , due to a lot of complaints about scams, I believe no one other than Americans can post their profiles.
Anyway at that time I was only 20 years old. Graduated 4 year college, got into the university, was trying to pursue my musical career, but lonely, my girlfriends were getting married left and right and I was still single and available. So I did it. We uploaded my photo, wrote my profile, submitd and waited. A Day after, as soon as my profile was posted, I started to receive tons of emails. The emails were from all over the world, from different type of man. The worst part is that I didn’t know English. I knew some from the school, but since I never took English seriously at school, I was crashed because I had no idea what was written in those letters. And back in 2000 they didn’t have those free translation softwares and translators/interprters like myself, that we have right now. So anyway, I was totally dependent on my brother who knew English very well. So, he was the one who was making choice, who I should write to, because only he knew what was written in those letters. So out of everyone who wrote to me based on what my brother told me they wrote, I picked two that I decided to have a serious correspondence with. I picked my husband( Mr. A) and another man( Mr. B). Right away I liked the appearance of both man.
I loved that my husband had a dog, he was handsome, young, since myself, I am crazy about dogs, they used to call me a “ dog mama”. We do a lot of volunteer work with local American shelters and rescues. And the other man didn’t have a dog, which was a minus ( for me). Not all of the Ukrainian woman are as crazy as myself about dogs, so don’t have to run and adopt a puppy. But Mr. B was good looking Italian man, lived somewhere on the beach in CA. SO two of them had a pretty good shot with me. I didn’t feel bad about corresponding with two man at the same time, since there was no commitment on eather site. We were just seeing what is going to happen.
My husband though was more agreesive in communication part. He was emailing me every single day, where Mr. B was slow, I would only get an email from him every two weeks. So a month later after our correspondenc My husband decided that he wants to come and meet me. It was the most excited news I heard in months,, so of course, I said , I would love to meet him in person. So he bought the tickets. We decided that we will meet in Kiev, the capital of Ukraine, because this would be a neutrual territory for both of us. I never been to Kiev, and of course, he wasn’t there either himself.
So it was a good place. He send me some money for the train, I got myself and my borhter some tickets and we went to see him. Yes, I wanted my borther to come alone, since I was only 20, I didn’t know if mr. A is a maniak, if he is planning to abdact me or kill me. I don’t know what is going through his mind. Plus my parents insisted that my brother should go, and he would interpreter for us.
So, even though it happened almost 11 years ago, I still remember , like it was today. WE took a train, arrived in Kiev, my aunt that lives in Kiev ,met us at the train station, took us to her home, helped us to arrange an apartment rental for Mr. A. We were ready for his arrival. I was so nervous, I had butterflies in my stomach. I was to the point, where I was so nerviou and scared that I didn’t want to go and meet him at the aiport, my brother had to drag me on the bus. We took a bus. Got to the airport. There were a lot of people who were waiting for their familes and friends who were arriving from overseas and us. Mr.A plane was coming late.
I was so nervous and scared, I was ready to run off. Luckly for Mr. A, my brother was with me and he made me wait. So I remember, we were waiting at the meeting area, and finally people from his flight were coming out ,and I saw him, my heart was beating 100 miles and hour, I didn’t know what to do, what to say, so I hugged him, and ran to the phone booth, this was my excuse, to call my parenst and let them know that he arrived and everything was ok. I was just sitting there and thinking what to do, should I ran away or should I stay. So my brother drag me and we all went on a bus that took us to his apartment in downtown.
We put his suitcases in the baggage area on the bus, and sat on our seat, my brother was on the front and two of us on the back, I didn’t know what to say, beca use I didn’t know the language and plus I was so nerv ous, he was quiet too. So, I finally said, “ nice weather” and he said “ yes”. So we use some jestures and facial impressions and tried to communicate, plus my amazing brother helped us. After we overcame that first step of communication , we had an amazing time together in Kiev, we made a decision that we do want to be together, so as soon as mr .a came back to USa, he filed a petition for k1 visa and in May of 2001 I was in USA and in August we were married.
I can tell you this, It has been an amazing adventure for all of us. And guess what, we are still together, More about story of my life, you can ready in m other book. Personally for me it is a huge change. When you leave everything behind it is very hard. When you leave your family, friends and everything that you know and going to be with someone totally different in diffent surroundings it is very hard.
And it is not only hard for your fiancé but it is also hard for you. Because both of you need to adjust to each other’s feelings, thoughts, believes, things that you used to on your own, cultural differences. Unfortunately not every woman that comes to USA to be with her fiancé makes a decision to stay here, or after couple years of life together they decided that it is not for them. Anyway, I hope you enjoyed reading this little biography and how I met my husband. And now let’s continue to more important part, your travel to Ukraine!