Today we were on what seemed like a super highway for Ukraine as we traveled from Odessa to Kiev. Finally – some smooth tarmac – hallelujah! However, as I sped down this highway constantly trying to go the ever changing, never-marked, speed limit I was stunned by the culture along the highway in Ukraine.
Imagine this highway as a regular interstate like the I-80 or I-5 in the US – big, wide, and busy with cars going top speeds. In Ukraine anything goes along the side of the road on the shoulder. I passed people hitchhiking, selling fruit out of buckets, sleeping along the side of the shoulder, rollerblading along the shoulder and of course biking in every direction along the shoulder was allowed!
Then there were the animals, ducks and chickens were frequently seen on the road just hanging out. But when I looked up in the distance and saw a big animal – I was shocked. There was a cow walking down the middle of the highway! Once I made this realization, I slammed on the brakes as the cow would clearly win against our Nissan in the game of chicken on the highway!
Thanks to Rick for grabbing his video camera quickly to capture this crazy cow moment!
Another surprise was the pedestrian crosswalks that were frequently crossing the highway. Not on a bridge above the highway…but on the highway. Not to mention the many places where Uturns on the highway were legal.
We stopped at a roadside stand to have some coffee and decided to play Ukrainian Roulette for breakfast by just pointing at a breaded rectangular shape and hoping for the best. Luckily we made the right choice – it turned out to be an apple filled pastry…whew. I doubt we’ll be that lucky all the time!
That’s the eternal problem traveling in the Ukraine – not being able to read the signs or menus. As I sped by signs on the highway I wondered if they were important. I had no idea what message they were trying to tell me – which was a bit concerning.
All in all, the highway culture kept me engaged and in awe during my 6 hour drive today…better than any can of Diet Coke ever could!
How to donate to our charity – the Christina Nobel Foundation – we are still collecting donations along the way!
- It’s Real Now
- Pimpin’ Our Ride
- Festival of Slow – Mongol Rally Kickoff
- First Stop – Brussels
- Stopped by the Police – Mongol Rally
- Learning to Drive on the Autobahn
- CzechOut our Camping – Mongol Rally
- Racing Through Prague – Mongol Rally
- Driving in Romania
- Twilight in Brasov – Mongol Rally
- Four People One Key – Mongol Rally
- Crossing Borders with Natasha- Mongol Rally
- What I see out my window – Mongol Rally
- Ukraine Highway Culture – Mongol Rally
- Mongol Rally: Driving in Ukraine
- Hotel Nissan – Mongol Rally
- Kiev Paperwork Forgery – Mongol Rally
- Teaming up in Volgograd – Mongol Rally
- Russian Stereotypes
- Good Luck at the Kazakhstan Border – Mongol Rally
- The Hardest, Longest, Slowest, Dirtiest Road Yet – Mongol Rally
- The End of The Road – Mongol Rally
- Camping on the Mongol Rally
- Locals to the Rescue – Mongol Rally
- Setting Up Camp – Mongol Rally
- Bad Things do Happen on the Mongol Rally
- The Birth of Kazakhstan Tourism – Mongol Rally
- Kazakhstan’s Secret City – Astana
- The Best Laid Plans – Mongol Rally
- Our Car’s Health – Mongol Rally
- My ride in a Kazakhstan Police Car – Mongol Rally
- The Real Adventure Begins – Mongol Rally
- Minor Repairs – Mongol Rally
- How To Wait at a Border – Mongol Rally
- Border Bonding – Mongol Rally
- Mongolia Freedom – Mongol Rally
- Lost in the Mongol Rally
- Slowing Down – Mongol Rally
- The Mongol Rally Diet
- Muffler Mayhem – Mongol Rally
- Sink or Float – Mongol Rally
- Mongolian Hospitality – Mongol Rally
- Driving in Mongolia
- Tire Trouble – Mongol Rally
- Desert Illusions – Mongol Rally
- Mongolian Malls and Mechanics
- Shocking Tarmac – Mongol Rally
- Mongolian Cloudscapes – Photography
- Ulaanbaatar in our Sights
- The Finish Line – Mongol Rally
- Hurray for our Mongol Rally Sponsors!
- What’s it all for?
- What Happens to the Car?