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Photographer's Note

I always dreamt of goint to Odessa. It seemed so relaxed and romantic to me. So, during my Moldovian vacation my friends decided to take me there. It is only 180 km from Chisinau, which appeared to be 5-hour drive one way. Roads of Moldavia... Now I'm a fan of those - they remind me of the Indian bus experience, if you know what I mean ;) And then, we spent around two boiling hot hours at customs.
Anyway, let's get back to Odessa-mama, as we call it in Russia. At first sight it didn't impress me at all. I expected a city of beautiful scuffed 19-century facades, and as if to mock at me the city met me with freshly-built malls and hotels. I was disappointed, but didn't want to admit it. We went to a park, reached the Black sea, and I decided that after all it wasn't that bad. Finally we got to the city center. That's where I found my shabby houses, lions by the stairs and cat-inhabited yards where locals dry their clothes.
But this picture isn't about the city of Odessa as such. Odessa is an important port that links Ukraine and, for example, Istanbul, as well as other cities.
A friend of mine, with whom I was travelling, is a seaman - and fond of his job, so this picture is basically a tribute and thanks to him for taking me there :)

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