The reason I decided to skip that flight to Georgia and stay in Ukraine was almost entirely due to my Couchsurfing hosts in Kiev. They showed me such an awesome time in town and such an awesome side of the city that I realized I would feel like I had shortchanged Ukraine were I not to stay longer.
Most of this revolved around music, though the political demonstrations played a part as well. Each night that I was in Kiev, Anton introduced me to some new and awesome band as we went out to meet his friends somewhere. The first night was a relatively unknown Ukrainian band that played traditional Soviet songs charged with a modern sound. At one point, Anton told me that everybody in the place was so excited “because it reminded them of their childhoods.” Except, you know, with an awesome beat.
The next night was much the same, but this time with a pretty well known band that has sold out stadiums in Ukraine but still plays in more intimate venues like the one we went to. If I remember the name of the bank I’ll link to a video, but it was one of the coolest concerts I’ve been to since I left the States.
Adding to this was the interest with which Anton attended the political rallies, which managed to communicate itself to me as well.
After all this excitement packed into three days, plus a trip to Chernobyl, there was no way I was going to leave the country without exploring a little more thoroughly.